According to the EPA (US Environmental Protection Agency), electricity production is the single largest contributor to the greenhouse gas emissions parade. This means that to be energy-savvy does not only help save your money, but also makes a contribution to the betterment of the planet. As the AC unit is one of the least energy efficient appliances in the house, using a variety of tricks to reduce its power consumption is a must. The best home cooling techniques that won’t add up to your energy bill include air duct maintenance, strategical fan placement, and making the best use of the natural resources you have.
4 Energy-Savvy Tips to Keep Your Home Cool in the Summer
1. Get a top-notch thermostat to go with your ES-approved AC unit
Buying an Energy Star (ES)-approved air conditioner is a must by default. These devices are more cost and energy-efficient, and definitely worth the extra dollars. However, to cut down their energy waste even more, you need to complement an AC with a programmable thermostat. It will be best to get one that can be controlled via a smartphone app. This way, it will be easier to make sure it’s turned off/on exactly when you need it.
Note that for maximum savings you’ll need to set the thermostat at the highest temperature you can tolerate. Even a few degrees will save you a lot of money in the long run.
2. Get a pedestal fan and use it well
It’s true that an AC unit provides more comfort than a fan, but sometimes the latter will be sufficient to keep you cool. Check the model’s noise level, energy consumption, and design to choose the best pedestal fan for you. Decide if you benefit more from a stationary or an oscillating device.
Remember that the most important factor to consider when using a fan is its location. Place it in a way that will allow the device to cool the exact spot where it’s needed most. Air blown by the fan will reflect from solid surfaces, so you should count walls into your fan-cooling strategy.
The Mother Nature herself offers you a chance to make your house cooler by offering shade from the trees. If you don’t have any, now is the time to pay a visit to the local nursery and plant a few. When doing this, bear in mind that to cool your home, they will need to shade the windows when they grow.
In case this isn’t possible, use blinds, blackout curtains, or a special kind of drapes to block out the sunlight. There are specialized layered drapes with a reflective material at the outer layer that are particularly efficient for this.
4. Service and maintain your AC and vents
Clogged air ducts, an uncleaned AC unit, and blocked vents contribute greatly to the overall drop of efficiency in your house cooling system. Therefore, maintenance is essential to keep it as energy-savvy as possible.
Have your home inspected for energy-efficiency and make sure your insulation is thorough. Have your air ducts and vents cleaned at least once a year. You also should have your air conditioner serviced before the warm season starts. Note that booking this service will be harder the closer you get to the summer months.