Somewhere in Los Angeles County or Orange County –
Your friends: Power bills are going to be sky-high all summer running that AC.
You: Not my power bill.
Your friends: Then you’re going to roast in the heat.
You: Nope. Not with these tips….
When it comes to keeping down your energy costs during those hot LA and Orange County summers, you don’t have to compromise your comfort. You also don’t have to pay an arm and a leg to the power company just to keep cool and fresh. There are a few things you can do to cut down your energy costs without making your home feel like a locker room.
CONSERVE THE COOL
We at Accurate believe everyone should give back to their community. Yet, you shouldn’t try to cool the entire neighborhood by leaving your windows and doors open. Don’t leave the refrigerator door open when you’re making sandwiches and don’t drive around town with your windows down and the air conditioning blasting.
You’re wasting energy and honestly, nobody is getting your cold air.
Saving energy starts with conserving the cool air within your home. The biggest favor you can do for your home is to find all of your air leaks and stop trying to cool the neighborhood. When cool air leaks out of your home, the temperature goes up and your AC unit has to over-compensate. The best place to start saving energy is to seal your air leaks.
Some of the biggest overlooked areas in Southern California homes for air leakage are:
Recessed lights: Modern architecture looks clean and edgy but if the execution isn’t right from the get-go then this ends up being one of the more under-the-radar areas where you are losing your cool air.
Attic Hatch: An attic hatch can also be overlooked when it comes to air-loss in your home. If the attic itself is not insulated well or there bigger leaks within the storage area, if your hatch doesn’t properly seal it can act as a vacuum sucking out all of your good air.
Wall Chase: A wall chase is also designed to work with your attic to improve overall air flow throughout the house. Yet some chases are not sealed correctly where they meet the attic so a lot of air can seep out of your home in multiple rooms.
Beyond the abnormal areas, doorways and windows are big opportunities to have your comfortable air repossessed by the outside. Conserve your air by stopping the leaks. Think about how much your water bill would be if you had dripping faucets in every bathroom of your house. Conserving the cool air will reduce the overall usage of your air conditioner, enable it to work less while using less energy and in turn, you will see your energy bill drop.
Once you’ve sealed all of your leaks and you know you’re not losing cool air, you should utilize blinds, blackouts, and shades. Sometimes it’s not about letting the air escape, it’s about making sure your home doesn’t become a microwave. By sealing cool air inside and reducing the sunlight to come in you can reduce heat gain by almost 50%. You don’t need to live in a dark cave, but if you plan on spending some of the day outside or you are at work all day, keep the shades down. Stopping your air from heating up will maintain a comfortable temperature so you won’t have to blast your air conditioner all the time.
BE YOUR OWN BIGGEST FAN
With no air leaks and keeping the shades down, your air temperature will stay intact. By using ceiling fans or some oscillating fans you can slightly raise the temperature on your thermostat without compromising your comfort. The fans create a slight windchill effect that will keep you and your family cool by continuously circulating the air within the room. Since you’re not letting in sunlight and you don’t have any air leaks in the attic or through those good looking ceiling lights, you will be saving money! Remember to turn off the fans off if no one is utilizing the room – save that power!
PROGRAMMABLE THERMOSTAT = GAME CHANGER
An intricate thermostat alone can make your energy bill drop. If all the pieces are in place – no air leaks, blinds, and shades are down, and your circulation is in full force – a programmable thermostat will know exactly when to give your home a blast of cool air to keep the atmosphere fresh and comfortable.
Keeping your home slightly warmer while you’re away and cooler when you’re home will save energy costs and create longevity for your own air conditioner unit. While you are finishing up at work, your air conditioner will be firing up to get make your home the ideal temperature.
By the time you walk in the door, the air will be nice and cool and you will have saved more money by not having to set your thermostat to a low temperature when you were gone all day.
One common mistake homeowners do is they will set their thermostat to a low temperature to speed up the cooling process, but all this does is make your air conditioner work harder. Doing this again and again through the high volume seasons could cause your air conditioner to malfunction or fail.
A programmable thermostat allows you to be versatile when scheduling cool temperature times, will save you money and projects you into the technologically-smart percentage of society.
PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE IS ALSO COOL
Car collectors don’t just put blankets over their babies in the garage. Surfers even have multiple procedures for keeping their boards fresh. Achieving longevity and maximum efficiency for your air conditioner comes with taking care of it. One example is replacing your filters regularly. This tactic actually will increase the productivity of your unit and lowers its energy consumption between 5%-15%. There are a number of ways to perform preventative maintenance on your unit and our team at Accurate can always tell you more.
EXTRA CREDIT TIPS
Stopping the leaks, keeping the air inside cool and fresh, making sure it circulates well, monitoring the actual usage of your air conditioner so it performs when needed and keeping your air conditioner healthy are all ways to save money while staying perfectly cool. You can also avoid putting appliances that give off electric heat near the Thermostat. The thermostat could pick up the heat output from your TV if you are binge watching a show and actually affect your AC run time.
Some homes or condos don’t always have the best circulation in the bathroom. When you take a hot shower and the humidity increases, use a fan or your bathroom fan to disperse the hot air.
Remember not to set your thermostat at a lower than normal cooling temperature. This could cause the AC to work harder than it really has to. If you turn down the temperature, your home will not cool faster, but your AC unit could burn out faster.
Some of these details may seem like pennies of advice, but pennies add up to dollar bills and if you don’t ignore these details, you could save a lot of money during this summer and summers to come. Remember, you don’t have to compromise your comfort or short-change yourself with cold air. You just have to be smart.