Americans are serious about their AC: over three-quarters of United States homes have air conditioners, and air conditioners use about 6% of all the electricity produced in the United States, at an annual cost of $29 billion to homeowners. If that isn’t enough reason to think twice about your AC usage this summer, consider this: in a state as hot as Texas, the average household can spend as much as $600 per year on cooling alone!
If you’re looking to cut down on costs this summer (while still keeping your cool), try following these tips to take some of the pressure off your hard-working AC unit. Your wallet will thank you.
Before You Begin
One of the best ways to trim down your cooling costs is to install a high-efficiency AC unit, particularly if your current unit is more than 10 years old. A newer unit will use between 20% to 50% less energy to keep your home at the same temperature as your older unit. Installing a programmable thermostat is another worthwhile upgrade: setting your home’s temperature higher while you’re away at work or after the sun goes down reduces wasted energy, and makes for one less thing you’ll forget to do in the morning.
Summer Energy-Saving Tips
- Have your AC serviced each spring to ensure that it’s in top operating condition, and to catch any problems before they worsen.
- Give the AC filter a monthly cleaning, and replace it yearly. A dirty filter will inhibit air flow, making the unit work harder than it needs to.
- Turn off your AC when you are mowing around the outside condenser unit. Mowing kicks up dust and allergens, and these can clog up the filter.
- Rinse off the outside condenser at least once a month to prevent debris from affecting the condenser coils.
- The return air plenum under your inside air handler is known as the “dust catcher”. Vacuum in the closet area under your air handler annually.
- Cook meals outdoors to prevent your stove or oven from warming your home.
- Insulate and seal your home’s ducts. Air loss through improperly-sealed ducts accounts for about 30% of AC energy usage.
- Turning on a ceiling or standing fan allows you to increase the temperature on your thermostat by about 4 degrees.
Try some of these tips this summer, and you may just find yourself with some extra money at the end of the season. The home cooling experts at Goff are only a phone call away, whether it be for advice, maintenance, or a new energy-efficient AC unit installation to carry you through another hot summer. Call us today at 903-838-6923, or visit us online for all your home comfort needs!