15 Ways to Reduce Air Conditioning Costs
Are you weighed down by skyrocketing utility expenses this summer? To slash AC costs without sacrificing comfort, you should adopt energy-saving routines, implement low-cost changes and make strategic long-term investments. Here are 15 proven techniques to use.
Adopt Good Energy Habits
Lowering AC expenditures may be easier than you suspect. Here are some totally free ways to ease your monthly power bills:
1. Keep curtains and blinds closed: About 76 percent of the sunlight that streams onto standard double-pane windows enters as heat. By shutting out the sun by pulling insulating curtains and blinds over your south- and west-facing windows, you lower 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 cooling bills for each degree you raise the temperature. Try cranking up the temperature on your thermostat a tad higher than usual and running a fan to make up the difference.
3. Turn off the lights when not in use: Lights, especially incandescent bulbs, make a great deal of heat. Turning them off when you aren’t in the room lowers the interior heat gain your AC must combat.
4. Use appliances prudently: Wait to use heat-generating appliances like the oven, dryer and dishwasher until the coolest point of the day. This technique lightens your AC’s load during the hot afternoon, bringing down your bill and maximizing home comfort.
5. Run kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans: Get rid of heat and humidity while cooking and showering to reduce the workload on your air conditioning.
Invest in Low-Cost Upgrades
If you’re willing to spend a few dollars, you can put an even greater dent in your cooling costs. Here are some affordable enhancements to consider:
6. Set up a programmable thermostat: If you still have a manual thermostat, consider upgrading. A programmable thermostat automatically changes the temperature based on your daily schedule. You can trim AC bills by up to 10 percent by turning the temperature back 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours a day. Thanks to automatic recovery periods, you can enjoy these savings without hassle or discomfort.
7. Schedule regular maintenance: Your air conditioning should have scheduled checkups to make sure it runs easily and efficiently. Maintenance visits every spring also offer a chance to identify and fix minor issues before they grow into expensive repairs. This small, predictable cost provides a tremendous return on investment through greater efficiency and helps your AC last as long as possible.
8. Seal leaks: In a large number of homes, leaky windows and doors cause about 25 percent of its cooling energy use. Fix those annoying leaks with caulk and weatherstripping.
9. Add reflective window film: Window film reflects the sun’s rays to the outdoors, limiting solar heat gain. This economical upgrade is a very good way to increase your older windows’ efficiency without replacing them.
10. Upgrade to LED lights: LEDs produce almost no heat and utilize a lot less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. These properties help keep your home more comfortable and reduce lighting costs as well.
Consider Long-Term Home Investments
If you’re prepared to make more substantial changes, consider the following investments to cut AC costs in the long run:
11. Insulate the attic: Hot air can get through the ceiling if your attic has not been properly insulated. Peer inside the attic, and if you don’t see a deep, even layer of insulation, you may want to look into adding more. Depending on what form of insulation you choose, you could need to contact a professional for the job.
12. Plant trees for natural shade: Planting leafy trees on the south and west sides of your house blocks sunlight and produces a cool microclimate around your home, naturally cutting down on your cooling needs.
13. Replace your windows: Old, single-pane windows let in quite a bit of heat, requiring your AC to work harder. Installing double- or triple-pane windows with state-of-the-art glazing features increases your home’s air-tightness and keeps the interior cooler.
14. Upgrade your AC system: Running an aging air conditioner hurts your wallet more than you might think. Upgrading from a decade-old 10 SEER model to a modern-day 15 SEER unit can save you 33 percent on your AC costs. The savings opportunities 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 operate your cooling system and other electric devices. The ongoing cost savings, together with tax incentives available through 2035, make this a worthwhile investment.
Save More on Your AC in Buffalo With Help From Sunbeam Service Experts
At Sunbeam Service Experts, we go above and beyond the expected to make sure our customers get excellent HVAC services that help cut air conditioning costs in the long run. Because of our premium products, Expert knowledge, and attention to detail, we feel very comfortable backing our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. To learn more about how we can help lower your summer AC expenses, please get in touch with the Experts at Sunbeam Service Experts. Schedule your appointment by calling 716-427-6807 today!
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