Air conditioning is a welcome luxury during the heat waves of summer. Few people can imagine spending a hot summer afternoon without turning on their air conditioning, and that can make July and August some of the costliest months on the calendar in terms of energy consumption.
Although the months of July and August don’t seem like a good time to cut down on energy consumption, there are ways to save that don’t involve turning off the AC power.
Reconsider the location of your thermostat.
The Performance Building Institute, Inc. notes that thermostats are heat sensitive. Thermostats located near heat-generating appliances like lamps, televisions, and computers can be tricked into thinking the inside of a home is warmer than it actually is. This will allow a temperature-controlled air conditioner to run longer and more frequently than needed. If necessary, move the thermostat to a part of the house where there are no electronics and appliances.
Focus on servicing the AC unit.
Even the most energy efficient air conditioning unit will be forced to work harder and use more energy if not properly maintained. The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy notes that ENERGY STAR certified HVAC equipment can generate annual energy savings of 10 to 30 percent. But such products must be maintained. Annual maintenance appointments with an HVAC technician can ensure the unit is clean and the refrigerant levels are correct, helping it run as efficiently as possible.
Embrace natural ways to keep the inside of a home cool.
Turning on the air conditioning isn’t the only way to maintain a comfortable temperature inside a home during the months of July and August. Closing the curtains on particularly hot days keeps the sun out and makes it easier to maintain comfortable indoor temperatures without lowering the temperature on the thermostat. Avoiding the stove on hot nights and cooking cold meals or lighting the grill outside is another way to keep the house cool.
Solve insulation problems.
Cracks around windows and doors affect the temperature inside the house, making it colder in winter and warmer in summer. Seal cracks around doors and windows to keep cool air inside during the summer. Keeping that air inside should allow you to raise your thermostat temperature without compromising comfort.
Come summer, energy conservation should not come at the expense of comfort. Various strategies can help people reduce their energy use and keep their air conditioners on.
Air conditioning is a welcome luxury during the summer heat waves. Few people can imagine spending a hot summer afternoon without turning on their air conditioning, and that can make July and August some of the costliest months on the calendar in terms of energy consumption.