Summertime brings longer hours of daylight, more sunshine….and higher electric bills. Air conditioning keeps homes cool and comfortable but uses a significant amount of a home’s total energy consumption. Utility bills can add up! And if all your neighbors are running their AC at the same time, it can lead to rolling blackouts. That’s why we recommend every homeowner in Los Angeles makes a plan for how to save energy throughout the hottest months. With an energy savings plan, you can use your home’s appliances and systems efficiently while achieving energy savings during the summer’s warmest days.
Energy-Saving Tip #1 – Manage the Heat from Your Windows
Your windows are a huge source of added heat inside your home. And once your house is hot, your air conditioner has to use energy to cool it back down. So, be mindful of your window usage. Closing blinds, shades and drapes in rooms when they are receiving direct sunlight will help reduce heat transfer. This simple step can ensure rooms remain cool; plus, your A/C won’t need to work so hard.
Energy-Saving Tip #2 – Go With the (Air) Flow
Open all your interior doors so that cooler air freely flows throughout the house. Use ceiling fans so you can comfortably raise the temperature on your A/C’s thermostat by several degrees. Check your HVAC filters each month and replace them as often as needed, or at least every 3 months.
Energy-Saving Tip #3 – Seal It Up
Check the house for air leaks. Your cool air may escape through fireplaces, holes in foundation walls and attics, and around doors and windows. Close fireplace dampers, caulk around windows and places where there are air leaks in attics and foundation walls, and install or replace weather stripping around doors. Inject foam insulation into walls without insulation and add R-30 rated insulation to your attic. Make your home as snug and air tight as you can. And don’t forget to have your ductwork checked for tightness during a routing AC maintenance visit. You don’t want that cold air from your air conditioner leaking into your attic!
Energy-Saving Tip #4 – Limit Extra Heat
Run heat producing appliances during the coolest parts of the day. Cook more on an outdoor grill or in your microwave, as it uses half the energy your stove or range does. Place your refrigerator’s temperature setting between 30°F and 42°F. If it has a power saving switch, use it. If your dishwasher has an economy setting, wash on that setting. Only run full loads.
Energy-Saving Tip #5 – Run a High-Performing Air Conditioner
In the summer months, your air conditioner uses an enormous amount of energy. Do everything you can to ensure your AC is running at peak energy efficiency. Schedule HVAC maintenance in the spring, or sign up for a maintenance agreement so you never forget. When your air conditioner starts to hit double-digits in age, replace it with an energy-efficient system like the Carrier Greenspeed Intelligence system. Not only will you get outstanding energy efficiency, but these systems typically qualify for cash-saving special rebates.
For more energy-saving tips and ideas, check out some of our other articles:
- Is an Energy Efficient HVAC System Worth It?
- Understanding Energy Ratings
- Top Tips for a More Energy Efficient Home Tips
- How to Increase HVAC Energy Efficiency
- 2020 HVAC Rebates and Promotions