4 Tips for Reducing HVAC Energy Costs during the Summer
As the days get longer (and hotter), and the nights get shorter, energy costs skyrocket for many homeowners due to an increase in use of their air conditioning units. Here are two investments and two ways to reduce energy consumption.
Investing obviously has an upfront cost, but it will help you save money in the long run. Of course, some cannot afford the cost of these investments, so included are lower cost alternatives. Of course, investing in both the higher and lower cost items will maximize efficiency, but that is dependent on your budget.
1. Upgrade your Technology
The most effective way to minimize your energy costs is to invest in a new, energy efficient air conditioning system. Replacing older units for and energy efficient unit will decrease the amount you will spend on energy tremendously. Whether it’s a window unit or central air conditioning, newer models use much less energy than older units to produce the same output.
Obviously, new units can cost a significant amount of money, so another technology investment you can make that costs much less is a smart thermostat. These thermostats can be controlled from outside the home via smartphone. You can set your thermostat to turn off air conditioning during the day while you are at work and turn back on before you get home.
2. Window Upgrades
Replacing single-paned windows with double-paned windows can significantly decrease the amount of money you spend on energy during both the summer and winter. Double-paned windows are much better insulators than single-paned windows. This means that they keep cool air inside and hot air outside during the summer and warm air inside and cold air outside during the winter.
Replacing the windows in your home can cost thousands of dollars, so a significantly less expensive alternative to new windows are insulated curtains. There are thermal curtains that insulate rooms year-round and blackout curtains that keep the sun out, lowering the temperature of the room. Many thermal curtains are also blackout curtains but not all blackout curtains are thermal curtains, so it’s important that you pay attention to what you purchase. These are highly effective and very low-cost.
Regardless of whether or not you make these investments, there are other ways that you can lower your energy bill.
3. Circulate the Air in your Home
This simple tip can help cool your home faster, especially if your home is multi-level. Hot air is less dense than cool air, so it tends to rise to the ceiling and upstairs. Turning on a ceiling fan is an easy solution for this. Turning on a fan will help mix the dense, cool air and the light, warm air and evenly distribute it throughout your house. This means that your air conditioning unit will be on for a shorter period of time to acquire the same results, thus lowering energy costs.
4. Lower Resistance
“Work smarter, not harder.” This saying is entirely applicable to your AC system. Lowering the resistance of the air traveling through your home lowers the amount of energy your system uses to cool your home. Keep your vents open and make sure that nothing is covering them. This could be animal hair and dust or furniture and curtains. Make sure that ducts are clear and clean. Having a clean filter also means that the system can use less energy to push cool air through your house.
We hope that these recommendations help you lower your energy costs this summer. Remember to stay up-to-date with your HVAC servicing to achieve the best results.