Filed under: Home Tips
With summer well on its way, you may be suffering from a bit of a shock as you look at your utility bills. While there is little that you can do to eliminate these costs completely, there are a few simple tips that you can put to work to help reduce your costs this summer.
Tip #1: Have Your Air Conditioner Inspected
One of the simplest steps you can take toward saving on your electric bill is to have your air conditioner checked each year. Not only will a simple inspection and a little maintenance help keep your air conditioner running more efficiently, it will also reduce the chances of it breaking down and requiring replacement. While you are at it, be sure to replace your filters once per month to ensure your air conditioner is running as efficiently as possible.
Tip #2: Install a Programmable Thermostat
Most homeowners know that a great way to save on energy costs is to adjust your thermostat while you are not home or while you are asleep. By turning up your air conditioning a few degrees while you are at work, you can maintain a comfortable temperature without placing unnecessary stress upon your air conditioning unit. To ensure you do not forget to adjust your temperature, install a programmable thermostat so it can make the changes for you. Programmable thermostats are also great because you can program the thermostat to start blowing the colder air before you actually get home from work, thereby ensuring your home is cold down to your ideal temperature when you return.
Tip #3: Purchase Energy Star Appliances
Appliances with an Energy Star rating are certified to meet certain efficiency guidelines. While it is generally not a good idea to replace functional appliances with Energy Star appliances simply for the sake of saving energy, remember to look at the energy-efficient options when it comes time to replace appliances throughout your home. Even air conditioners are available in more energy-efficient varieties. To get the best energy efficiency possible, select a unit with a seasonal energy-efficiency ratio of 16 to 21.
Tip #4: Repair Leaks
Many people only think about repairing leaks during the cool winter months, but repairing leaks is also important during the summer. Cracks and other problems with the sealing around doors and windows allows cool air to escape, thereby forcing your air conditioner to work harder to keep your home comfortable. Feel around your doors, windows, electrical sockets, light switches and baseboards for potential leaks. If you find any, caulk the leaks so your cool air stops escaping to the great outdoors.
Tip #5: Replace Your Bulbs
Many homeowners are replacing their standard light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs because the fluorescent bulbs are more energy-efficient. During the summer months, using fluorescent bulbs offers another benefit: they do not create as much heat when they are turned on as standard bulbs. Save energy and help keep your home cooler with the help of these energy-efficient bulbs.