Just about every household starts to experience higher energy bills whenever warm weather rolls around. This is in large part due to how much energy it can take to battle heat inside your home when you’re relying solely on your air conditioner.
If you’re looking to lower your cooling costs this summer, try out these five home improvement tips and projects to make your home as comfortable as it is energy-efficient!
1. Install heat-blocking curtains or blinds.
Did you know that 76% of the sunlight that enters your home through a standard double-pane window becomes heat? To prevent all of this heat from entering your home, make use of window treatments that decrease your window’s solar heat gain. According to the U.S Department of Energy, cellular shades, roller shades, Roman shades, window quilts, and blinds are particularly effective at blocking heat.
2. Install awnings to shade your home’s windows and your air conditioner’s outdoor unit.
Awnings are another way to reduce your windows’ solar heat gain and increase your AC’s efficiency--and they can also add a decorative touch to your home in the process! Studies by the U.S. Department of Energy have revealed that window awnings can reduce a window’s heat gain by 65-77% during summer, depending on which way the window faces. Putting up an awning to provide shade for your AC’s outdoor unit (if it is not shaded already) will help your AC system cool air more quickly.
3. Seal all of your doors and windows.
It may seem like a small detail, but adding some weatherstripping to your home can save you a substantial amount of money on heating and cooling costs--more than 20% if your home is old or particularly drafty. You can seal windows that remain closed with caulk. For doors and windows that open, weatherstripping is the way to go.
4. While you’re in a room, use the ceiling fan.
In order to make a room feel cooler by redistributing its heat, run the ceiling fan in that room in a counterclockwise direction. This will allow you to rely less on your air conditioner to feel comfortable. However, it’s important to remember that ceiling fans only affect the temperature of the room in which they’re located, so if you’re leaving the room, turn off the ceiling fan to conserve energy.
5. Get your air conditioner tuned up.
Just like any machine, air conditioners are susceptible to wear and tear and a buildup of grime and dust that make them less efficient. When your AC is not operating as efficiently as it could be, that means that it’s using more energy than it used to in order to cool your home. This results in a higher energy bill. If you’re experiencing higher energy bills than last summer and can’t remember the last time your AC was serviced, it’s probably time to schedule a tune-up.
When the time comes for HVAC maintenance in Chesapeake or the surrounding areas, trust the expert team at Hutton Power & Light, LLC.