Summer is here, temperatures are rising, and for many homeowners, cooling bills are increasing too. Keeping your home cool around this time every year can be a challenge. There’s always a struggle to balance the desire for a comfortable, air conditioned home with the need to conserve energy and save money. Your air conditioner might be working hard this time of year, but there are summer cooling tips you can use to ensure you get the most out of it, while keeping your family cool.
1. Start Your Morning In The Shade
Be sure to close windows, entry doors, drapes and blinds early in the day, before the sun has a chance to warm up the inside of your home. By preventing the sun from getting in, your home will stay cooler throughout the day. Set a reminder alarm before you leave for the day and come home to a more comfortable indoor temperature in the afternoon or evening.
2. Give Appliances a Break
Many appliances, such as your washer and dryer, create additional heat and moisture, making your home feel warmer, and forcing your air conditioning unit to work harder. Try to use them early in the morning or late evening when the outside temperature is lower.
3. Don’t Over Cool
There is a misconception that when you set your thermostat lower than normal, your home will cool down faster. However, this is false. This strategy does not work and wastes energy. Instead, limit your thermostat to a small range around your normal set point (7-10 degrees higher or lower). If you’re looking for an energy-efficient setting, the U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting your thermostat to 78 degrees F when you’re at home.
4. Consider Installing A Programmable Thermostat
Programmable thermostats allow you to set different temperatures throughout the day and week based on your personalized schedule. Some newer thermostats will even learn your schedule and adjust the temperature in your home when you’re home or away. It’s easy, just set it and forget it.
5. Strategically Plant Trees
Trees have so many environmental benefits and they’re also a great way to create natural cooling affects for your home. If you’re thinking about a landscaping project, consider planting trees to shade your air conditioning unit, which will help your system run more efficiently. Similarly, planting trees that provide shade to your home will help keep your home cooler in the summer months.
6. Have an Annual Cooling System Inspection
Having a yearly air conditioning tune-up, performed by an HVAC professional, will help your unit operate at peak efficiency. During the tune-up, the technicians should check your unit’s coil, refrigerant levels, air filters and more. To ensure that you’re getting the most from your air conditioning system, schedule your annual tune-up online.
More Ways to Save Energy at Home
If you’re looking for more ways to save energy at home, check out our blog about Home Improvement tips: DIY Ways to Save Energy at Home or consider having an energy audit. An Energy Audit will help uncover areas in your home that are allowing air to escape and provide you with ways to make your home more energy-efficient. To learn more about the benefits of an Energy Audit, read our recent blog.