As the hotter months get closer, you may wonder how to keep your home cool and comfortable without your energy costs soaring. The secret lies in using your AC more efficiently. Follow these 12 simple recommendations and techniques to keep your HVAC system in optimal condition, decrease energy consumption and save money.
1. Leave the Thermostat Alone
Frequently altering the thermostat makes your cooling system work harder, raising energy consumption and causing excessive wear and tear. To optimize efficiency, set the temperature at a comfortable level—preferably around 78 degrees F (25 degrees C)—when you’re home. Next, refrain from moving it. If you get too warm, take off a layer of clothing, spray water on your skin or turn on a fan to cool off without lowering the temperature.
2. Set the Temperature Back When You’re Away
For maximum savings, set the temperature 7-10 degrees higher than your standard setting for at least eight hours per day. To help you “set it and forget it,” think about installing a programmable thermostat. This convenient upgrade allows you to schedule temperatures based on your day-to-day routines, automatically adjusting the temperature to create a comfortable home when you’re there and saving energy when you’re away.
3. Keep the Curtains Closed
Solar heat gain from direct sunlight forces your cooling system to work more than it has to. To decrease heat gain, close the curtains over your south- and west-facing windows in the afternoon. Window coverings with light-colored backings work the best at reflecting the sun's rays.
4. Keep the Vents Open
Obstructed or closed air vents throw off your HVAC system’s supply/return air balance, decreasing efficiency and upping operating bills. To stop this, keep at least 80 percent of your supply registers open and make certain no return vents are hindered by curtains, furniture or rugs.
5. Create Airflow with Fans
Utilizing fans in conjunction with your HVAC system circulates cool air more effectively, making your home feel more comfortable while barely increasing energy consumption. Ceiling fans, in particular, create a wind chill effect that makes the room feel about 4 degrees cooler, allowing you to set the temperature higher without losing comfort.
6. Get Rid of Hot and Humid Air
Cooking and showering generate heat and dampness. Run your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans during these activities to decrease your home’s cooling load. Additionally, verify your clothes dryer vents to the outdoors to stop hot, humid air from releasing into your house.
7. Use a Dehumidifier
Elevated humidity levels cause your home to feel cool but clammy, tempting you to decrease the temperature. A dehumidifier removes excess moisture, making your home feel cooler and more comfortable while consuming much less electricity than using the air conditioner.
8. Install Your Outdoor AC Unit in the Shade
The outdoor unit’s location influences its operation dramatically. Installing it on your home’s north or east side shelters the equipment in the afternoon for more effective heat transfer. If the unit gets direct sunlight at the hottest time of the day, consider planting a tree or using a screen to shade it. Just make sure that any plant or structure you add doesn’t hinder airflow.
9. Save Your Chores for the Evening
Cooking, laundry and washing the dishes lead to indoor heat gain, making your air conditioner work harder. Conducting energy-using activities like these at night when temperatures cool down reduces the cooling load during the hottest part of the day and saves energy.
10. Replace the Air Filter
A filthy filter limits airflow and increases energy consumption, so be sure to exchange it routinely to promote maximum performance. Many basic filters should be replaced every 30 to 90 days, but its best to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for the ideal replacement schedule for your product.
11. Seal and Insulate the Ductwork
Leaky, uninsulated ducts waste significant amounts of energy, especially if they run through unconditioned areas like the attic, crawl space or garage. Sealing and insulating your ductwork increases system efficiency and brings down energy spending.
12. Schedule Preventative AC Maintenance
Scheduled tune-ups are recommended to keep your air conditioner running successfully. Hire a licensed professional to inspect, clean and service your system every spring. This precautionary measure extends your air conditioner's life span, reduces energy consumption, and allows the technician to find and fix potential issues before they become costly problems.
Request Air Conditioning Service in Jacksonville
At Air Engineers Service Experts, we pride ourselves on offering comprehensive AC services, including installation, maintenance, repair and replacement in Jacksonville. Our customers choose us again and again for our unparalleled expertise and dedication to customer satisfaction. In fact, we offer a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee on every service we provide! Work with our crew at to keep your home cool, comfortable and energy efficient this summer.