Keeping your home cool and comfortable throughout the long, hot summer can be hugely expensive. It also puts a huge amount of strain on your air conditioner since the unit often needs to run throughout most of the day. The good news is that there are a number of different ways that you can easily reduce your cooling costs, and here are some of the most effective options.
Annual AC Maintenance
Having your AC maintained by a professional every year is by far one of the best ways to keep your cooling costs from being too high. Without regular maintenance, the effectiveness and energy efficiency of the unit will always quickly start to decrease from year to year and even month to month. Professional AC maintenance will ensure that your system is working effectively and help to reduce how long and how often it needs to run.
All homes have at least some cracks and gaps where air can seep in, and this can result in a huge amount of heat gain over the summer. This is especially true if your attic is leaky, since it will allow tons of hot air to get trapped inside. Air sealing involves patching up any leaks to help reduce heat gain and also ensuring that the attic has enough insulation to prevent hot air from penetrating down into the rest of the home.
Windows are another of the biggest sources of heat gain during the summer. South- and west-facing windows are the worst culprits, since these get more direct sunlight during the hottest parts of the day. Keeping your blinds or curtains closed helps to reduce heat gain from sunlight, but most people prefer not to always have to keep their windows covered. For this reason, we recommend window tinting as it will prevent sunlight from streaming inside while also allowing you to still see outside.
Ceiling fans can also be a huge help during the summer. If you run the fans clockwise, it will create a cooling breeze that will help to keep you from feeling nearly as hot. This will allow you to set your thermostat a few degrees higher without any noticeable impact on your comfort. In turn, this will make it so that your AC doesn’t need to run as often and your energy costs are lower.
Cooking and bathing both create lots of heat and can quickly raise the temperature throughout the building by a few degrees. They both also produce lots of humidity, which will make your AC have to work far harder. These issues are why you should always make sure to keep your exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathroom running every single time you cook and bathe. You should also let them continue to run for 10 to 15 minutes after you finish to ensure that most of the hot, humid air is drawn out of the building.
All of these methods can go a long way towards reducing the strain on your AC and preventing your home from heating up as quickly. In this way, you can easily reduce your AC bills without having to sacrifice your coolness and comfort.