It gets pretty hot in the summer in Indiana and Michigan. Your poor air conditioner will work very hard to keep your home cool. But there are some things you can do to help it out and lower your utility bills. Home Comfort Experts has made a list of basic things you can do to keep your cool this summer and lower energy bills:
1. Use a Programmable Thermostat
setting your home’s temperature a few degrees higher will help reduce your energy bills. Start by setting it two degrees higher than you normally set it. You may be surprised that you don’t notice much of a difference. When setting back your thermostat on a daily basis, a setback of 7-10 degrees F for eight hours a day can save as much as 10 percent on annual heating and cooling energy use. When leaving on vacation — usually more than three days — set your thermostat to 85-90 degrees F in the summer.
2. Use Your Fans
running your ceiling fans will make the temperature seem cooler because the wind chill effect of air moving over your skin will increase the evaporation of moisture from your body. You may even be able to set the temperature a couple of degrees higher and not notice discomfort. Don’t forget about circulating fans, bathroom, and kitchen exhaust fans too. Run them whenever you take a shower or cook to remove heat and moisture from your home.
3. Cook Outdoors More Often
avoid adding heat from your oven by grilling outside more often in the summer months.
4. Keep Your Lights Off
whenever possible, keep your lights off. If you have incandescent bulbs especially as they produce the most heat when on.
5. Replace Your Light Bulbs with LEDs
compared to incandescent bulbs, LED bulbs use less power (watts), last longer (1,200 hours vs. 50,000 hours), emit less heat (3.4 btu’s per hour vs. 85 btu’s/hour), and lower electric bills to boot.
6. Close Blinds during the Day
don’t let Mr. Sunshine add to your home’s temperature. Closing your blinds during the day will keep solar gain at a minimum.
7. Open Windows at Night
let the cool air in during the night so your home starts off naturally cooler.
8. Wash on Cold and Line Dry
hot water and a running dryer add heat to your home. Use cold water when possible and hang your clothes when you can.
9. Change the Filter in Your Air Conditioner Regularly
a dirty filter makes it harder for your AC to cool your home which means it is less efficient and uses more energy (higher utility bills).
10. Get an AC Tune-Up
this will ensure your system is running efficiently (cooling better) and will help you avoid breakdowns.