Save This Summer
Summer is here and so is the sun! Summertime means warmer weather, longer days, and time spent outside with family and friends. While this season brings fun in the sun, it also brings bigger air conditioning (A/C) costs making your energy bill more expensive than any other time of the year. With a solar energy system, homeowners can save money on their A/C costs by producing their own power. However, there are other ways to cut down A/C costs without the production of energy that a solar energy system provides. Whether you’ve had solar for years or are interested in getting a quote for your home, these energy saving habits will help reduce the impact cooling has on your energy bill.
Adjust Your Thermostat For Outings
We all have that temperature that we are comfortable with during the Summer. Some like keeping their temperature as cold as they can compared to outdoor temperatures, but that temperature doesn’t need to be set at all times. Christina Kielich, spokesperson for the U.S Department of Energy, recommends programming your thermostat to match the outdoor temperature when residents aren’t home. Keeping your thermostat set to the outdoor temperature could cut your A/C costs down anywhere from 10%-18% for the entire Summer. Energy customers can save even more by matching the outside temperature at night when members in the home aren’t active. The closer you get to matching the temperature outside with the thermostat, the more you can maximize your savings!
Check Air Filters
While optimizing your thermostat and A/C system is a great way to save, there is more to maintaining low A/C costs than keeping track of temperatures. Air conditioning systems need to be checked on and maintained. One of the most proactive steps you can take to maintain your A/C is checking and changing the air filters. Clogged air filters make cooling your home difficult, and the air coming through the vents are filled with dust and debris that can contribute to health issues like allergies and asthma. Central cooling systems outside of homes should be checked on as well, and the floor vents should be free of any dust or furniture blocking the airflow. Regardless of what kind of system exists in the home, residents should check their filters monthly, and even get a professional to inspect cooling systems annually.
Bring Out The Fans!
Fans do not necessarily turn down the temperature in a room, but they do make a room feel seven degrees colder. Both ceiling fans and plug-in fans assist with blowing cool air from the A/C. Residents can even turn their thermostat four degrees warmer with fans turned on and likely not notice a difference in air temperature. Changing the thermostat four degrees while having fans on can help cut 17 cents per hour off your A/C bill. Ceiling fans cost only one penny an hour, so get those fans running and start saving! Additionally, fans are easier to keep powered for a longer time period with energy storage in the event of a grid outage than A/C units.
Take Breaks From Certain Appliances
Using certain appliances in the home can contribute to higher A/C costs by raising the temperature inside. Appliances like stovetops, dryers, and dishwashers increase internal temperatures and use more electricity! Next time you are cooking on the stove or using your washer and dryer, take a look at your thermostat. I’ve found that my apartment’s temperature will spike three to four degrees while cooking on the stovetop. Some ways to work around this include washing dishes by hand, hanging clothes out to dry, cooking on the grill, or even using the microwave. On top of these appliances, large electronics like plasma TV’s produce excess heat. If you can help it, cutting back on using these appliances during the day will help make your home more comfortable and lower A/C costs.
Start Your Summer Savings
Incorporating the practices above will help keep you cool and lower your A/C costs. Summer in the Carolinas can experience extremely hot temperatures, as certain areas stay over 90 degrees consistently throughout the season. Even with a solar energy system, customers in the Carolinas experience a spike in their energy bills. Practice these tips this Summer and notice the difference in your energy bill from previous years!
If you are interested in lowering your energy costs entirely, investing in solar energy system for your home can bring you energy savings and independence. To get in touch with a solar consultant for a free quote, click the link here!