Reduce Summer Cooling Costs and Stay Comfortable Indoors
Keeping your cooling costs low during the hottest time of the year can be as easy as making a few simple changes. Reduce summer cooling costs while staying comfortable by following these tips.
1. Close Window Coverings
Solar heat gain is when the indoor temperature increases due to sunlight coming through windows. 76 percent of the sunlight allowed through a typical double pane window becomes heat. Closing window treatments during the day is an easy way to reduce solar heat gain and summer cooling costs.
Medium-colored draperies with white plastic backing are particularly effective. They decrease solar heat gain by 33 percent. If you’re at work or school during the day, close all of your window treatments while you’re away. If you’re at home, keep east-facing windows covered in the morning. In the afternoon, close window treatments on west-facing windows.
2. Manage Your Thermostat
Set your thermostat to the warmest temperature you find comfortable. The higher the thermostat is set, the more you’ll reduce summer cooling costs. If you have a programmable thermostat, set it to cool your place in time for your arrival home in the evening. Don’t set your thermostat to a very low temperature to cool your home quickly. It’s not effective and can raise your cooling costs by making the air conditioner work too hard.
3. Keep Warm Air Out
Windows should be kept closed during the day to keep hot air out of the house. Inspect windows and doors for air leaks. A home inspector who offers thermal imaging can discover areas of the home that aren’t airtight. Use caulk and weatherstripping to seal leaks around doors and windows.
4. Use Ceiling Fans to Reduce Summer Cooling Costs
Air conditioners and fans work differently. Air conditioners lower air temperature and fans keep the air circulating. You can use a fan and an air conditioner together to reduce cooling costs. Since the fan helps by moving cool air through the room, you can increase the thermostat temperature without becoming uncomfortable. Make sure the fan is running counterclockwise to keep the home cool.