6 Ways to Save on Cooling Bills This Summer
May 22, 2018
Set it and Forget it
Programmable thermostats have become very popular in recent years because of the notion that you can set your thermostat back when you’re not at home and it will automatically re-adjust when you come home. It makes sense. The system doesn’t have to run as much so it must be using less electricity, right?
Well, not really.
When it is time to get back up to your desired temperature, your system has to run at full capacity for a longer period of time to get there. When you hit the gas in your car you use more fuel than when you’re coasting on the highway. This is similar to energy usage with your HVAC system.
So find a temperature you’re comfortable with and set it and forget it!
Change Your Filters
Air filters have a specific purpose in a cooling system and it might not be what you think. Many think that the air filters you change out regularly are to keep the air in your house clean. But unless you have a specific media (4”-5” thick cartridge) or electronic air cleaner, clean air is not the main goal.
The main goal with your standard 1” filter is to keep the insides of your air handler or furnace unit clean of dust, debris, and particulates. These invaders can clog up key components of your system which causes your cooling system to run harder and longer to keep up with your cooling needs.
Changing filters regularly and at scheduled maintenances with your HVAC company can help your cooling system run smoother, cleaner, and more efficiently helping to save you money.
Get a spring maintenance
The best way to keep your system healthy and running at optimal efficiency is to have a maintenance done at LEAST once a year.
A good maintenance should last 45 minutes or longer and should include changing filters, tightening wire connections, cleaning the indoor and outdoor coils, checking ductwork and testing the various temperatures and pressures that effect the system performance.
Another important reason to have your air conditioning system regularly maintained by a reputable company is because many manufacturers require a system be maintained, cleaned, and checked for proper operation or the parts warranty could become void. This would leave you to foot the entire bill should a repair become necessary.
Install a Wi-Fi Thermostat
Whether for your primary residence or a second home, a Wi-Fi thermostat can help you keep track of how your air conditioning system is performing.
Imagine getting to your house on a July day when temperatures are soaring over 100F outside. You walk in the door thinking you’re about to escape the scorcher of the outdoors only to walk into a sauna that is HOT, HUMID and extremely uncomfortable.
Having a Wi-Fi thermostat that can link with an app on your phone or computer could’ve sent alerts about run times, current temperatures and humidity. Seeing your indoor temperature is over 80F when it is supposed to be 70F would alert you to a potential problem and prompt you to call your local HVAC service company.
With a Wi-Fi thermostat you can address any potential problems quickly and save yourself time and money.
Seal up your leaky duct system
Air ducts are the delivery system for your air conditioning system. Unfortunately, approximately 20-30% of the air moving through your duct system is lost due to leaks according to the energystar.gov website. Holes and leaks in your ductwork send this cold air into places such as crawlspaces and attics instead of where you really want it, inside your living space.
Leaky ducts not only waste energy because your air conditioning system needs to run longer to achieve the desired temperature but also causes comfort issues since the right amount of air is not reaching its target and can cause warm spots in bedrooms or living rooms.
Having your ducts sealed is simple and can be done as a DIY project or relatively inexpensively by a contractor.
Upgrade to a more efficient system
An air conditioning system begins to lose its performance abilities the older it gets. This can cause your house to become uncomfortable, your system to run non-stop like a 4 year olds story and rival the sound of a jet engine when they turn on.
New systems are quieter and use less energy High efficiency systems can reduce cooling costs by 50-60%, and can make your house comfortable again. A great comfort consultant from your local HVAC contractor will take into account your wants and needs to design the perfect comfort system for your lifestyle.
If you’ve been putting off replacing your air conditioning system because you just aren’t sure what your options are, your local air conditioning service company should be able to provide you with a free in home assessment and provide options to help you navigate picking your new comfort system.