When the mercury rises in Sumter, South Carolina, your energy bill doesn’t have to automatically increase too. Switching your AC off in the summer months is not an option, but you can take some practical steps that will make a big difference. Don’t let the summer heat affect your pocket. These air conditioning usage tips will help you save on your monthly energy bill.
Close Blinds and Curtains
Your AC is up against a formidable enemy: the hot sun. We all like a bright home, but direct sunlight is sure to warm up your home. Keep curtains and blinds closed during the day. This insulates windows and stops cold air from escaping, thus reducing the amount of work your AC needs to do. You can also invest in blackout curtains to block direct sunlight and insulate the room. Open windows and window dressings at night to let the heat of the day escape.
Use a Fan
It’s not always necessary to turn down the temperature on your thermostat. There are a few options to supplement your AC system, and one of the easiest is to switch on a fan. A cool breeze circulating in the house might be all you need to get into that comfort zone. Fans use a fraction of the energy and can ease the workload of your AC.
Did you know that to keep your home cool in summer, you must adjust the direction of your ceiling fan? When your ceiling fan rotates counter-clockwise, it pushes the room air straight down for a breeze that creates a wind-chill effect that keeps you cool.
Cooking indoors creates a lot of heat, putting a strain on your air conditioning system. Summer months are a great time for cooking outdoors or having a barbecue. If you do decide to cook indoors, cook during the cooler hours of the day, and use appliances that create less heat, such as electric griddles or slow cookers.
Turn on Your Dehumidifier
Along with hot summers in South Carolina comes high humidity levels. A dehumidifier will improve the comfort in your home and prevent other problems caused by high humidity such as biological growth and damage to furniture.
Turn Your Thermostat Up
The recommended temperature for your air conditioner is 78 degrees Fahrenheit. But to save money, set your thermostat to the highest temperature you can tolerate, and when you leave your home, turn the temperature up. Even better, invest in a smart thermostat to enable you to remotely program your AC to cool your house right before you get home.
During the night, you might not need the same level of cooling. Try turning your AC down while you sleep or set it to "sleep mode."
Keep Your AC in the Shade
The north side of the house is the ideal spot for a central AC unit. If moving yours is not possible, this green idea could make a difference. Plant trees or shrubs around your AC. This will keep your unit in the shade, enabling it to work more efficiently. It’s aesthetically pleasing and great for the environment. An AC that operates in the shade uses less energy than one placed in direct sunlight. If the air around the unit is cool, the air conditioner will require less energy to do its job.
Service Your AC Unit
Keeping your AC maintained increases its efficiency, extends its service life, and reduces the risk of future costly repairs. There are a few maintenance issues that are safe to handle on your own, but leave the rest to the professionals. If your system is more than 12 to 15 years old, it might be worth it to consider purchasing a new one.
Just a few changes to your habits and thinking can have a great impact on your air conditioning usage. Keep your system maintained by calling Air Solutions Heating and Cooling at 803-753-4830 or schedule an appointment with one of our expert technicians online.
Image provided by Shutterstock