How to Keep Energy Costs Down This Summer
As temperatures heat up in the Montgomery, AL area, you would probably prefer it to stay cool inside your home. However, air conditioning costs tend to be the primary cause of high energy bills for most homeowners, especially in the summer. Don’t let AC costs break the bank this summer. We have 14 reliable ways to help you keep energy costs down in your home all season long.
14 Ways to Keep Energy Costs Down This Summer
1. Change The Air Filter
Whenever your energy bills begin to rise, the first thing you should do is check your air filter. Dirty air filters put more stress on your comfort system and force the system to work harder to cool your home. As the weather heats up, change your air filters more often to keep your system running at maximum efficiency. You can also purchase reusable filters to lower the long-term cost of replacing your air filters. Just don’t forget to clean them regularly!
2. Turn Up the Temperature
One of the more obvious ways to lower your bill is to turn the temperature up. By turning the temperature up just a few degrees, you can significantly reduce your energy bill without doing more than pushing a button. The U.S. Department of Energy states that 78 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature for staying comfortable while also reducing energy consumption. However, we’ve found that keeping your thermostat set at 74-75 during summer months can reduce your energy usage enough to see a difference on your energy bills.
3. Use Your Fans
Even though ceiling fans don’t lower the temperature in your home, they can make it more comfortable. The ‘wind-chill effect’ disperses the cool air around the room, making it feel cooler. If your home doesn’t feel cool enough, try turning on the fan before turning down the thermostat to keep energy costs down.
4. Keep Doors Shut
Every time a door or window is opened, you are letting warm air in your home and conditioned air out. Doors and windows should stay closed as often as possible when the air conditioner is running to prevent temperatures in your home from fluctuating and putting more strain on your comfort system.
5. Seal Windows
Keep air from escaping through small openings around windows and doors with proper weather stripping. Be sure to identify and seal every gap; even a tiny area can raise energy costs and make cooling your home more difficult.
6. Close the Curtains
Use blinds or curtains to keep the sun out during the day. When the sun shines through the windows, it can easily heat up your home, forcing your comfort system to work harder and raising your energy costs. Curtains work as an excellent insulator between the cold air inside and the warm outside air on those bright, sunshiney days.
7. Cook Outside More
Summer is a great time to use the grill. Spending more time cooking outside helps keep your kitchen cool, rather than using your oven or stove. These appliances can heat up your whole home, pushing your AC system into overdrive to cool your home back down. If you cook inside, opt for recipes that use appliances that generate less heat, like a crockpot, air fryer, or toaster oven.
8. Upgrade Your Windows
If your home doesn’t have Energy-Star rated windows, your energy bills could be higher than necessary. Upgrading to windows with energy-efficient coatings will save you money, put less strain on your air conditioning system, and keep you more comfortable.
9. Program Your Thermostat
Programming your thermostat to automatically adjust temperatures based on when you will be away from home is an easy way to increase energy efficiency. With a programmable thermostat, you don’t have to worry about keeping an empty house comfortable. Just set your thermostat based on your schedule and you’ll be comfortable when you’re home and save money. Barrett Cooling can help you pick the best thermostat for your home, your family, and your budget.
10. Plant Some Trees
Lower your energy bills and increase curb appeal by planting trees outside of your home. Adding environmentally friendly plants around your home naturally helps to keep energy costs down. Choose plants like:
- Aloe Vera
- Ficus Trees
- Snake Plants
- Baby Rubber Plants
- Golden Pothos
Shading your rooms with plants reduces cooling capacity by absorbing the heat from their surroundings and keeping the area cool. Be sure to keep trees and shrubbery at a safe distance from the house. No limbs should touch the home itself.
11. Install Solar Panels
Not only do solar panels lower your air conditioning costs, but they also power your home using the sun’s energy. Solar panels can use energy at a fraction of the cost of utility providers, although this type of change may be more of a lifestyle choice to also help protect the environment.
12. Create a ‘Cool Roof’
A cool roof is a great way to keep your energy bill lower without sacrificing comfort. Cool roofs use reflective material to prevent heat from coming into your home.
Contact a local contractor to learn about turning your roof into a cool roof.
13. Bring in the Professionals
If you have tried all of the energy-saving tips you can muster, and your energy bills are still through the roof, it’s time to bring in the professionals. A professional HVAC contractor can service your system year-round to make sure it is functioning correctly.
The professionals at Barrett Heating & Cooling will clean condenser coils, change air filters, and check cooling efficiency and voltage connections to determine the cause of your rising energy bills in regards to your comfort system.
14. Upgrade Your HVAC Comfort System
Rising energy bills may even be a sign that it’s time to upgrade your comfort system. Upgrading to a high-efficiency comfort system can even reduce your energy bills by as much as 60% depending on the system you have now! While the upfront cost of a new air conditioning system may seem significant, it’s an investment that will be well worth it in the long run. Not only will you save money on energy bills with a new system, but your home’s temperature will also remain more consistent, keeping you more comfortable year-round.
For more tips and tricks regarding your home’s HVAC system, visit our blog. We share helpful information to keep your family safe and your home comfortable. We are your trusted American Standard Customer Care Dealer in Prattville, AL, and the surrounding areas.
If you think you need to upgrade your comfort system, we can help you pick the right option for your home. Our professional staff can answer any questions you might have. You can also call us at (334) 365-2011. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram.