Let’s face it: when summer settles in and the heat waves never end, your air conditioner is going to be on 24/7. But constantly running the air conditioner has its downsides, including wear and tear on the unit and increased energy bills.
Fortunately, there are ways to help your air conditioning keep you cool all summer long while lowering your electricity bill. Even in the relentless heat, you can supplement the work of your air conditioner by doing a few simple things. So instead of dreading the bill at the end of the month, you can stay cool without worry. If you have any other questions, you can read info from Academy Air.
Ceiling fans are one of the best ways to help keep your house cool during the summer. If you do not have fans installed, or your current ones are old, you should look into purchasing new ones.
Just like the wind can make you feel cooler when you’re outside, fans will help you feel as much as eight degrees cooler because of the constant air circulating around you, whisking away the heat. This will allow you to dial the temperature on your thermostat up a few degrees, immediately saving you money and energy. Fans are much cheaper to run, as it costs nearly 70 times more to run an air conditioning unit. So do yourself a favor and install ceiling fans in the rooms you are in the most, and you will stay cooler for cheaper.
You can install most ceiling fans yourself, too. Many homes already have wiring and support built in to hold and run the fans, but if that’s not the case you will need to contact a professional.
Check for Leaks
A large portion of your extra energy costs are from inefficient leaks in doors, windows and other places that cool air can escape from and warm air can enter your home. Take the time to check certain trouble areas. If the leaks are large enough, you will feel the air moving. You can also use a candle and find leaks by the disturbance of the flame.
Doors and windows are the main culprits in energy loss. Make sure that all of the weather striping around them is in good condition and replace it if there are any cracks or splits. Also, make sure that all outside doors fit snugly in their frames. If you can see sunlight around the edges, chances are that you will need to get the door fixed to prevent leakage.
Attics and crawlspaces also allow air to escape. Use caulking or a foam spray to seal the joints and, if possible, use weather striping to secure it.
Maintain Your Air Conditioner
The best way to ensure that your air conditioning runs efficiently is to keep it in good repair. Clean the outside of the unit at least once a year to get rid of any yard waste buildup that clog it up. Also, keep the grass around the unit mowed short and do not let leaves accumulate near it.
Many heating and air conditioning companies offer professional maintenance services as well. For a small fee, they will use industrial cleaners, charge your unit with new freon, check your ductwork for leaks and run a diagnostic on your entire system. This is a great way to stay ahead of any problems that can arise when the air conditioning is constantly running during the summer. A few extra dollars spent on maintenance can save you a lot more in the future.
Make Do Without
When all else fails, you may need to shut the air conditioning off all together every once in awhile. Even though this doesn’t sound pleasant, there are ways you can still stay cool while giving your unit a rest.
Cold packs are a great way to stay cool. They are cheap and easily available, and can stay cool for hours. You can sit on them or place them on areas of your body that are hot. You can even put them behind a small fan and build your own quick air conditioning!
If you’re still uncomfortable, you can always take a short, cold shower to cool down. Also, wear as little clothing as you are comfortable with so the heat can escape your body. If you wear clothing, make sure it is lightweight.
These are just a few of the tips out there for lowering your energy costs during the summer.
About the Author
Summer Fisher is a Mom on a budget and is often heard shouting at her kids to turn the heating/tv/lights/air-con off, or down! She shares some tricks on saving money while staying comfortable no matter what the weather.
What your your best tips for reducing air conditioner usage–while staying cool?
Share your thoughts and comments with us.