According to the DOE or U.S. Department of Energy, your home’s air-conditioning and heating bill accounts for nearly half of the overall energy usage in your home. And as more people around the world are staying home, their energy costs are presumed only to increase in the summer months. Here are some easy and practical ways to cut your energy costs during the warm months:
Change to a New HVAC Unit
Many residents want to replace older air-conditioning units for an energy-efficient model capable of consuming more than 50% less energy than earlier models. While you might have to spend some money on replacing your old unit, you can quickly recoup your investment from the savings you get from your reduced energy bills.
Don’t Neglect the Ductwork
Check your Ductwork frequently. If you find some seam separations or gaps, use duct tape to seal them off. Take note that older homes are prone to losing more than 20% of the cold air produced by the air-conditioning unit when the ductwork leaks. Consequently, the machine can’t reach the area it is supposed to cool. You can also consider using weather stripping or caulking in gaps surrounding windows and doors, advises an HVAC specialist.
Use Shades or Tinted Glass Windows
Shade your window unit or air-conditioning compressor. A simple shade tree or overhead awning can result in the more effective operation of your HVAC system and help reduce your energy consumption. Ensure, however, that shrubs, enclosures, or debris don’t block the airflow.
Maintain Clean Filters
Clean your air filters at least once monthly or every week if you live in a particularly dusty area. One of the top reasons for an underperforming air conditioner and its eventual breakdown is a clogged and filthy filter. Cleaning your air filter is more cost-effective than hefty energy bills, as well as repair bills that might come about just because of dirty air filters.
Install Automated Thermostats
Consider installing a programmable thermostat for controlling your HVAC system more efficiently. If yours is a window unit, consider a plugin timer for automatically deactivating your air conditioner when you expect people to be out. You can also program your unit to cool only areas occupied by people.
However, remember that while you can easily follow some of these steps, you need to have your HVAC system inspected at least once a year to make sure that it continues to operate at optimum efficiency, preventing expensive repair work in the future. If you feel unsure about the state of your air conditioner, do not hesitate to seek the advice of an expert or professional.
Even as the global pandemic makes people stay home, you still need to feel as comfortable as you can. Though many welcome spending more time at home, the uncertainty of the times can make life more stressful. If your home can make you and your family more comfortable, then it only ensures that everyone will stay healthy physically and mentally and get through these troubled times.