Boost Your Energy Efficiency This Summer
The main culprit in high summer energy bills is no secret: your A/C accounts for nearly half the energy your home uses during the hottest months of the year. The good news is that you can reduce that number quite a bit by following some simple tips.
Here are eight energy-saving suggestions to get you started.
- Check/change your air filters – Check your filters about once a month, cleaning or replacing them (depending on the model) as needed. A clogged air filter can reduce A/C efficiency by 10 to 15 percent, and will eventually lead to unnecessary wear and tear on your equipment.
- Use your programmable thermostat – With a central air conditioner, every degree you drop your thermostat below 75 degrees could cause you to use three to five percent more energy. The good news is that the reverse is also true. Use your programmable or smart thermostat to adjust temperatures when you’re out of the house or sleeping. When you’re indoors, shoot for a reasonable 78 degrees for the best balance of savings and comfort.
- Keep the sun away – Did you know that nearly three-quarters of the energy that enters your home as sunlight is retained as heat? That’s a perfect reason to block as much of it as you can on hot days. Consider installing light-blocking window treatments such as reflecting films, shades, and curtains – to learn more, see the U.S. Department of Energy website).
- Keep air moving – Airflow is one of the most important and overlooked aspects of energy efficiency – it helps keep you feeling cooling while also keeping humidity under control. Keep air moving throughout your home by:
- Keeping vents in rooms you’re using unblocked by furniture, rugs or drapes.
- Installing an attic fan to remove rising hot air from your home.
- Supplementing your air conditioning with ceiling fans (moving air feels cooler, so you’ll be able to keep temperatures a little warmer with no loss in comfort). For really hard-to-cool rooms, consider adding a ductless mini-split A/C to reduce the load on your central system.
- Don’t forget your ducts – Look for obvious air leaks in visible ducts, especially around seals between sections. Just remember: most of your ductwork is behind the walls, so consider a professional duct inspection about once every five years.
- Service your equipment – Your cooling equipment will lose about five percent efficiency every year that it’s not professionally maintained – which means that routine A/C maintenance will basically pay for itself in lower cooling bills alone.
- Replace older equipment – Air conditioning equipment loses efficiency over time, and there will come a point when keeping your old A/C will cost you month after month. This is especially true if you’ve come to the point where you have to deal with a significant air conditioner repair. If you’re on the repair-or-replace fence, give us a call – we can help you make the best choice possible for value and comfort.
- Always ask a professional – Big box stores may seem like they’re giving you a good deal, but a qualified home cooling technician will do the little things that will help your system deliver value – and better performance – year after year. They’ll also know the ins and outs on tax credits, incentives, and manufacturer’s rebates, so they’ll be able to steer you in the direction of better deals on ENERGY STAR®-certified equipment. Look for HVAC pros that offer in-person evaluations – not just formulas – if you want to get the most energy bang for your buck.
Summer’s in full swing – is your air conditioner COMPLETELY ready for all the heat that’s coming our way? If it isn’t, contact TF Complete Heating & Cooling today to schedule air conditioning maintenance in Middlesex and Norfolk counties, MA. If your cooling system breaks down, we’ve got you covered with quality central A/C, ductless A/C, and heat pump installations, too.