Are you stressed by increasing utility expenses this summer? To cut AC costs without compromising comfort, you should adopt energy-saving behaviors, implement low-cost changes and make strategic long-term investments. Here are 15 tried and tested techniques to try.
Trimming air conditioning expenditures may be easier than you imagine. Here are some completely free ways to ease your monthly utility bills:
1. Keep curtains and blinds closed: Around 76 percent of the sunlight that beats down on standard double-pane windows gets into the building as heat. By shutting out the sun by pulling insulating curtains and blinds over your south- and west-facing windows, you minimize solar heat gain in the afternoon and reduce the necessity for air conditioning.
2. Turn up the temperature: You can save up to three percent on your AC costs for each degree you raise the temperature. Try setting your thermostat a bit higher than usual and operating a fan to make up the difference.
3. Switch off the lights when not in use: Lights, especially incandescent bulbs, make a whole lot of heat. Turning them off when you leave the space reduces the interior heat gain your air conditioner must combat.
4. Use appliances prudently: Wait to use heat-generating appliances like the oven, dryer and dishwasher until the cool point of the day. This technique relieves some of your AC’s workload during the hot afternoon, minimizing your bill and improving home comfort.
5. Run kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans: Remove heat and humidity while cooking and showering to cut down the workload on your air conditioner.
If you’re willing to spend a few dollars, you can put an even bigger dent in your AC expenses. Here are some cost-effective enhancements to consider:
6. Purchase a programmable thermostat: If you still have a traditional thermostat, think about upgrading. A programmable thermostat automatically modifies the temperature depending on your daily schedule. You can cut AC bills by up to 10 percent by setting the temperature back 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours a day. Thanks to automatic recovery periods, you can experience these savings without hassle or discomfort.
7. Schedule regular maintenance: Your air conditioning should have routine checkups to ensure it runs correctly and efficiently. Maintenance visits every spring also provide a chance to find and resolve small issues before they grow into expensive repairs. This small, predictable cost provides a substantial return on investment through improved efficiency and can lengthen the unit’s life.
8. Seal leaks: In lots of homes, leaky windows and doors cause approximately 25 percent of its cooling energy use. Seal those troublesome leaks with caulk and weatherstripping.
9. Use reflective window film: Window film reflects the sun’s rays to the exterior, limiting solar heat gain. This budget-friendly upgrade is a great way to increase your older windows’ efficiency without updating them.
10. Upgrade to LED lights: LEDs create almost no heat and use far less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. These properties help keep your home cooler and reduce lighting costs as well.
If you’re prepared to make more significant modifications, you may want to make the following investments to cut air conditioning costs in the long run:
11. Insulate the attic: Hot air can get through the ceiling if your attic is not properly insulated. Peek inside the attic, and if you don’t see a thick, even layer of insulation, think about adding more. Depending on what kind of insulation you choose, you could need to employ a professional for the job.
12. Plant trees for natural shade: Planting leafy trees on the south and west sides of your house obstructs sunlight and creates a cool microclimate around your home, naturally lowering your cooling needs.
13. Replace your windows: Old, single-pane windows let in a lot of heat, forcing your air conditioner to work harder. Installing double- or triple-pane windows with state-of-the-art glazing features elevates your home’s air-tightness and keeps the interior cooler.
14. Upgrade your AC system: Operating an aging air conditioner costs more than you might think. Upgrading from a decade-old 10 SEER model to a contemporary 15 SEER unit can save you 33 percent on your air conditioning bills. The savings capacity of this purchase is even higher if you’re prepared to invest more up front.
15. Install solar panels: Solar panels convert sunlight into electricity to power your AC unit and other electric devices. The ongoing expense reductions, together with tax incentives available through 2035, make this a beneficial investment.
At Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing, we make the extra step to provide excellent HVAC services that help cut air conditioning costs in the long run. Because of our high-quality products, Expert knowledge, and attention to detail, we feel confident backing our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. To learn more about how we can help reduce your summer AC costs, please get in touch with the Experts at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Schedule your appointment by calling 866-397-3787 today!
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