10 Home Efficiency Tips on Staying Cool This Summer

Posted by Hudson Heritage Federal Credit Union on Jul 23, 2019 4:00:00 PM

Every summer, the temperature goes up and so too does your power bill. The energy your AC requires to keep the house cool and your family comfortable is impressive, especially when the hot summer sun is heating up your house from the outside. Every year, you may enjoy the bright sunshine and the laughter of children out of school, but you don't look forward to that rising power bill.

Fortunately, there are many easy techniques to increase your home's energy efficiency and decrease the cost of power during the summer. Today, we're here to share ten of the best home efficiency tips available to keep cool this summer without breaking the bank. 

1. Adjust Your AC on Time of Day

Many people pay more for AC than they need to simply by never adjusting the thermostat. But really, you only need your AC at full blast when you're home during the hottest part of the afternoon. During the night or when you're out of the house, you can save a bundle on energy by either turning off your AC or reducing your use.

Work hours and nighttime are the perfect times to give your AC a break. Your house can safely warm up while you're at work and the cool night air means your AC doesn't have to work as hard to keep your house cool. Remember to adjust your AC settings based on your need for cool air, not just the convenience of leaving the setting in one place.

2. Install a Smart Thermostat

One nifty way to manage your AC temperature throughout the day is with a smart thermostat. These thermostats respond to wifi commands so that even if you forget to turn your AC off before leaving for work, you can save energy by making the adjustment through your mobile app instead. Some smart thermostats even learn your routine and will start adjusting themselves based on whether you're home, at work, or if the night is cool enough to go without AC entirely.

3. Change Out Your AC Filters

Your AC 'breathes' through the air filter, which pulls dust and pollen out of the air circulating through your home. When the filter gets clogged, it's like your AC is breathing through a stuffy nose and it has to work harder. That extra work costs you extra electricity, but the solution is simple. By changing out or cleaning your AC filters on time, you can significantly increase the efficiency of your air conditioning, using less electricity every month the filter is clean instead of clogged.

4. Get Your AC Unit Maintained

If your AC is old or functioning poorly, this can also cost you a pretty penny in power bills. An old or misbehaving AC can use more energy than it really needs to keep your house cool. The smart way to save money is to call an AC repair service before the summer gets too hot. They will perform an inspection, take care of any repairs, and let you know if the unit is on it's last legs.

Having your AC in good repair is a great way to save money as the unit runs more energy-efficiently when it is properly maintained.

5. Reseal Your Doors & Windows

A big part of home energy efficiency is how leaky or air-tight your doors and windows are when closed. Rattling windows with a poor seal don't just let the cold in during the winter, they can also let your cool air out during the summer. A quick line of new caulk around your window panes can make a huge difference in lowering your summer power bills. The same goes for your entry doors, which can be improved by installing a new frame of weatherstripping.

6. Keep Fans Running

Often, the summer feels hotter than it really is when there is no moving air. Ceiling fans and floor fans can be used to great effect in feeling cool even if you have your thermostat set to an energy-efficient temp in the mid-to-high seventies. Sleep with a fan blowing over your body instead cranking the AC way down. Use fans when you cook, exercise, or just to stay cool. Fans use far less electricity than an AC to keep you comfortable all summer long.

7. Open Windows at Night

Do you live somewhere with cool summer nights to balance the hot summer days? Then you're in luck. Cracking the windows open at the right time of night can work wonders to cool down your home in an entirely free way. Using your windows to stay cool is a great practical approach to lowering your summer power bill. All you have to do is remain aware of the cool hours of the night and open your windows during this time. Just remember to make sure there are screens in the windows, as summer insects won't hesitate to fly indoors.

8. Take Cool Showers

Have trouble staying cool when the AC is set to something practical? We've all been there at least once, and some people are more prone to summer heat discomfort than others. You don't have to pay the cost of electricity to super-cool your home if your body runs hot. Instead, learn the joy of a luke-warm shower. Cool water at the summertime tapwater temperature is the perfect way to wash away sweat and allow heat to be pulled from your skin.

A shower as cold as summer tapwater can get, or perhaps a little warmer, is exactly what your body needs to stay cool without having to sweat or sit directly in front of a fan for the entire summer.

9. Clever Use of Curtains

The sun pouring in through your living room windows may also be contributing to the heat inside your home. While your cat may like the warm sunbeams, your AC does not. Give your AC a break with strategic use of curtains during the day. Simply by dimming the afternoon sunlight a little bit, you can significantly reduce the ambient temperature of your window-facing rooms. This, in turn, allows your AC to work less hard to keep the home at your preferred temperature.

10. Enjoy Your Sprinklers on Hot Afternoons

Finally, if you have kids or are still a kid at heart there's always sprinkler games. Leaping around in the sprinklers is one of life's earliest joys and something you never really grow out of. With an outdoor spigot and a few basics like water balloons or a backyard pool, you can keep cool all summer long. Dousing yourself in lukewarm summer tapwater can be done in more than one way, and some ways are more fun than others. Water on the skin evaporates, carrying any extra body heat with it. Through sprinkler games and cool shower,s you can get through the hottest summer with ease.

---

Staying cool this summer doesn't have to mean overspending on electricity bills. With these tricks and others you'll discover along the way, you can significantly reduce the amount of energy your AC consumes by reducing your use and keeping cool in other less power-hungry ways. For more great insights on how to live comfortably on limited funds, contact us today!

Topics: My House & Home, Summer 19 Newsletter