The ability to stay cool and comfortable during the summer months can directly impact your well-being and the quality of your sleep. Since the air conditioning is costly, here are a few ways you can save some money while keeping your home cool:
Schedule a tune-up
The best way to save money on cooling costs is to schedule a tune-up for your AC unit. This is referred to as seasonal maintenance and will help ensure that your system runs efficiently and does not need repairs.
A professional will inspect the system, check the freon level, and make sure there are no leaks in the coils or leaks around doors or windows. If there are any problems with these things, they will be repaired before any more damage occurs.
Use a programmable thermostat.
The amount of energy used to cool your home can be significant, especially if you have a large house or live in an area where temperatures heat up quickly. If you want to reduce your energy consumption, try adjusting the thermostat by a few degrees when you leave for work or school.
This will still keep your home at a comfortable temperature but will use less power than cooling it down completely.
You can save even more money by purchasing a programmable thermostat that allows you to set different temperatures at various times of day. These devices are available online and at most hardware stores.
Replace dirty filters
You can save on your AC bill by cleaning or replacing your filters. Air filters are a big part of keeping your air conditioner running efficiently, and they can be cleaned or replaced depending on the type. You should replace or clean them at least once a month if you have pets or get lots of dust in your home, but make sure to follow any additional recommendations from the manufacturer (some recommend more frequent replacement).
Monitor humidity levels
We all know that humidity changes our physical perception of heat, but did you also know that air conditioning can’t function properly if the humidity levels in your home are too high?
In fact, most states have guidelines on what constitutes acceptable indoor humidity levels. The ideal range is between 30 and 50 percent RH (relative humidity). Most of us need to add moisture—through fans or humidifiers—to keep our homes below this level in the summer months, especially when it’s hot outside.
A dehumidifier will help reduce indoor heat and lower your energy bill by removing excess moisture from inside your home.
A dehumidifier works much like an air conditioner does: it cools down warm air by removing water vapor from the air through a series of coils and filters. They’re great for reducing mold growth as well!
Use window treatments
Do you have windows that get direct sunlight? If so, it’s best to use window treatments like shades, blinds and curtains.
- Awnings: Place awnings on the sunny side of your house to shade it from the sun.
- Shutter: Have shutters installed on the sunny side of your house for additional protection from heat and glare.
- Curtains: Hang curtains on the sunny side of your house if you want additional protection from heat and glare while still letting in light through windows (you can choose to make them semi-transparent).
Close windows and doors when using the air conditioner
When using the air conditioner, closing windows and doors will help keep cool air in the house. It also helps to keep hot air out. This small change can keep your home much cooler, allowing you to turn off the AC sooner than usual. Closing windows and doors has the added benefit of helping you save on energy costs, which is always nice!
Use ceiling fans instead of box fans to circulate cool air through the house during warm weather. Turn off ceiling fans before leaving if you’re going out so they aren’t blowing hot air around while you’re gone.
Open windows and doors when it’s cooler outside than in your home. For example, if it’s 75 degrees outside, open windows and doors to let cool air in when you don’t need to use the air conditioner.
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