I wanted to give everyone some tips on how to save money on ac / electric bills for this summer.
- Have your air conditioning system tuned up for the summer months ahead. This will allow your ac system to run at its peak efficiency. When your system is running at its peak efficiency, it doesn’t have to work as hard to do its job.
- Replace your filters on a regular basis. Did you know that the #1 cause of air conditioner failures are from lack of filter changes and maintenance.
- Try to keep your thermostat settings constant. Changing the thermostat setting continuously will make your system very inefficient. If you are not home during the day, it is wise to set it 2-3 degrees warmer than when you are at home. It is reported that you can save between 3-5% for every degree that you raise the setting.
- Put your fan in “fan on” mode on the thermostat when your are trying to cool your home. This will allow the air to circulate and even out the temperature. This is especially effective when you have hot or cold spots in your home.
- Reduce the radiant heat of the sun by closing your shades and keeping your curtain drawn. This will keep the hottest rays of the sun from directly entering your home.
- Go Green by planting trees (or installing awnings) that will shade windows facing the south.
- Replace old windows with low-E glass.
- Check your insulation in the attic. If it has lost most of its “fluff”, it may be time to consider replacing it.
- Be sure your air conditioner has 12-18 inches of clearance from all sides. Cut back trees or shrubs that are within this range.
Keep the coils clean (those are aluminum fins that surround the outside unit). Do this by keeping grass clippings, leaves, dirt or other debris away from the outdoor unit.
- To assure proper air flow in your home, don’t block vents or ducts. In addition, keep doors open, even those rooms that are not being used.
- Be sure to caulk and install weather stripping around doors (especially attic doors) and windows.
- Consider purchasing a programmable thermostat. By adding this at my home, I was able to save $50 on my last electric bill.
I have two other tips that don’t deal with the air conditioner.
The first is to try not to use the oven during the day. Additionally, run your dishwasher, dryer and washing machine at night when the ac doesn’t have to work as hard.
The second tip is to turn off tv’s, video games, lamps and other appliances when they are not in use.
I hope this helps tame your electric bill over the next few months. One thing is for sure, I am ready for some warmer weather!