For those scorching hot days in the Ohio summer, air conditioning is a life saver. But what do you do when the AC bills continue to climb each month, leaving your bank account wishing for fall? Allied Services, Inc. recommends keeping cool with these 5 ways to cut AC costs this summer.
1. Program Your Thermostat
Everyone knows that you don’t need to have your AC running at full blast during the day, if you aren’t at home. However, many people forget to adjust it before they leave for the day. With a programmable thermostat, you can program the temperature to self-adjust, depending on the time of day. This way, you won’t waste electricity while you’re gone, and you can have the house cooled down when you return. The Nest thermostat adds another layer of convenience by allowing you to access it from your phone, and it will eventually learn your habits so it will adjust to “on” by itself.
2. Use Fans
Fans don’t cool the air, but they do circulate the air and pull the body heat away from your skin, making you and your home feel cooler. They also use much less electricity than AC, so they will help offset costs and keep your house cool, if used in conjunction.
3. Open Windows at Night
The outside air might be too hot and humid for open windows during the day, but when the sun goes down and the breeze starts blowing, open up those windows to cool down your house and save on AC costs throughout the night. Fans will also help circulate the air at night when the windows are open.
4. Bring on the Shade
Shading as much of your home as you can will keep it cool in the summer months. Sunny rooms can heat up quickly, so installing Venetian blinds or light-colored curtains can make a huge difference. Also, planting shrubs and trees outside your south- and west-facing windows can not only block the sunlight from entering the house, but can also absorb the heat and help provide cool from transpiration (water loss from plant leaves).
5. Have Your AC Unit Serviced
Having your AC unit checked out before the major heat sets in will save you headaches and money in the long run. In fact, clearing a clogged AC filter alone can save 5 to 15 percent in energy use – and will help it work better and not break down. If your air conditioner is more than ten years old, it may be time for a new one, which could save lots of energy right away if it’s much better than what you currently have.