Believe it or not, the unbearable outside heat does not mean you have to blast your home’s air conditioning to be comfortable. You can, but that approach won’t help with you air conditioning bill. Rather, take advantage of the following basic steps to save money on your air conditioning bill, while also maintaining comfort.
1. Turn your air conditioning off when you aren’t home.
The easiest and quickest way to save money is to not use your air conditioner when you don’t need it or aren’t at home.
You may wish to invest in a smart or programmable thermostat. You can program these thermostats to turn the unit on half an hour before you get home, then you won’t have to wait for the house to cool down after work.
2. Set the thermostat at the highest temperature you can withstand.
By and large, the higher the temperature on the thermostat, the better when it comes to your air conditioning bill. Overexerting the system will be costly, plus, it can lessen the lifetime of the system.
Remember that every degree that you reduce increases the running cost by almost up to 10 percent.
The idea is for the thermostat to be set at the highest temperature in which you still feel comfortable. You certainly don’t want to be sweating in your own home, but maybe set the temperature a few degrees below sweating temperature and turn your fans on to add a little extra coolness.
Additionally, you should be able to set your thermostat to hold different temperatures at different times throughout the day. This will allow you to save energy by programming the thermostat at higher temperatures while you are away at work. You can also program it to a lower temperature for around the time you arrive home. If your thermostat does not have this capability, you need to upgrade.
3. Use your ceiling fans.
A great way to give your system a break is by using ceiling fans and save money on your air conditioning bill.
You can set the thermostat to a higher temperature and allow the fan to make up for the difference between the initial thermostat temperature and the adjusted thermostat temperature.
Or, you can turn off your air conditioner all together and rely on the ceiling fan to cool the house. As a result, the air conditioner will not have to work as hard, or work at all, and your air conditioning costs will reduce. In fact, a ceiling fan uses just 10 percent of the energy of an air conditioning unit while making a room feel cooler.
Ceiling fans also work together with air conditioners by spreading cool air more evenly throughout a room.
4. Maintain your air conditioning system.
Keep your air conditioner in good shape. This will save money on your air conditioning bill.
Make sure there is nothing obstructing the vents on the outside system, change the air filter once every couple of months, and treat it right all throughout by carrying out the rest of these steps. Treating your air conditioning system with care will lengthen its lifetime, optimise its effectiveness, and save you money over time.
5. Use your blinds, curtains and shades.
Blocking the sun’s heating rays from entering your home can help reduce your air conditioning costs. You can plant trees, shrubs, and ivy to create natural shade or you can use blinds, curtains, awnings, drapes or heat-blocking window film instead.
6. Plugging up air leaks around your home.
You can use an incense/smoke stick to help detect air leaks around your outlets, windows, and doors. Simply hold it up to suspected air leaks and watch the smoke to see if air is flowing in or out.
Use weatherproof caulk on any cracks smaller than a quarter of an inch and expandable foam spray for any gaps larger than that. Replace weatherproofing on your doors and windows and don’t forget about your air ducts if you have any. Air ducts can be sealed using mastic sealant or aluminium foil tape – don’t use duct tape!
7. Check your thermostat placement.
Sometimes your air conditioning system will run for longer than necessary because your thermostat is at a higher temperature than the rest of your home. Make sure that your thermostat is out of direct sunlight and away from heat-producing lamps and appliances.
8. Move your furniture.
Make sure your furniture is not blocking your air conditioner or any of your vents. Any poorly placed furniture can disrupt the airflow and keep that nice, cold air from getting to you. There are plastic pieces that can attach to your air vents that will help to force the air in the right direction. However, it is probably easier to just rearrange your furniture.
9. Lower your air conditioning temperature at night.
While you sleep raise the temperature slightly, or open a window. Doing so will cut down your bill significantly.
10. Upgrade to a new and energy-efficient system.
Sometimes, a rise in energy costs is simply a matter of an old and ailing air conditioning system. And while installing a new unit is an investment in the short term, it can save you quite a bit on expenses in the long term.
Do invest in an air conditioning solution that is energy-efficient, such as one with an Energy Star rating. Getting a unit that uses the energy-efficient R-32 refrigerant, such as the air conditioners produced by Mitsubishi Electric can also help reduce consumption and costs.
For more interesting facts and informative tips about air conditioning and regulating your indoor climate, please visit Mitsubishi Electric’s page here.