8 Top Tips To Save On Your Air Conditioning Bill This Summer

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As the summer months approach, many of us are looking for ways to keep our energy bills down while still enjoying a comfortable home. Air conditioning can be one of the biggest drains on your wallet during this time of year, so it’s important to know how to maximize its efficiency and minimize costs. The team here at Clean Air has put together 8 top tips for saving money on your air conditioning bill this summer. These simple steps can help you make sure that your air conditioner is running efficiently and not costing you more money than necessary. Read on to learn more!

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1) Raise The Temperature

setting thermostat

Maintaining a consistent temperature (any temperature) is a great way to cut back on energy costs, but this is especially true when you set the temperature on your thermostat a bit higher. Many people set their thermostats in the mid-to-low 60s during the hottest days of summer in order to beat the heat. While this will undoubtedly keep your house cool, it will also keep your energy bills higher than what you may be expecting.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the most energy-efficient temperature for the majority of American homes in summer is 78 degrees. This may seem a bit too warm for some preferences, but keeping your home around this temperature will save you money when it's time to pay the bills. Also, if certain maintenance and practices are carried out, setting thermostats a bit higher can actually keep your home much cooler than you would expect. If you follow the rest of the tips listed in this article, you will be able to set your thermostat at a higher temperature while still keeping your home cool and your energy bills low!

2) Update The Thermostat

thermostat money

Another easy way to save money on your air conditioning bill is by updating your thermostat. A programmable thermostat can be programmed to turn off the air conditioner if you are not home for a long period of time and automatically adjust the temperature setting according to your schedule. This helps ensure that you're only cooling your home when it's absolutely necessary, leading to smaller energy bills in the long run.

Programmable thermostats are also great for helping keep temperatures consistent throughout the day. This prevents sudden changes in temperatures that can put unnecessary strain on an AC system (leading to higher energy bills). So, if you haven’t updated your thermostat in a while, now might be the perfect time to make the switch.

3) Clear Obstructions

maintaining flowers around AC

One of the easiest ways to save money on your air conditioning bill this summer is to make sure there are no obstructions in front of the outdoor condenser unit. The condenser needs to be able to absorb heat from the air in order to cool it down and pump that cooled air through your home, but it can not perform this function if objects are blocking its ability to take in air. Take some time to look at the outdoor unit and search for any obstructions.

Blocked vents can also cause a significant amount of strain on an AC system, resulting in higher energy bills and overall poorer performance. If the vents that emit the cool air are obstructed by furniture or other objects, the air will have a harder time circulating through the room. Below is a list of some of the most common obstructions to look out for around outdoor condensers and indoor vents:

  • Shrubs
  • Tall weeds
  • Flower gardens
  • Fences/Trellises
  • Furniture (indoor and outdoor)

4) Change The Filter

Air Filter From an HVAC Unit

In order for your air conditioner to work properly, it needs to have a clean air filter. Dirty filters reduce airflow and strain the system, leading to higher energy bills and poorer performance overall. To keep your AC unit running efficiently this summer, make sure you remember to change out its air filter every month or two. This will also help improve the air quality in your home for an even more comfortable summer indoors.

It’s also important to check the filter monthly for dust and debris buildup, whether or not you need to change it. If there’s an excessive amount of dirt on the filter, try cleaning it off with water instead of replacing it (just don’t forget to let it dry completely before reinstalling it!). This quick step can help you save a lot of money on your energy bills this summer, so don’t forget to do it!

5) Keep It Running

Lady On A Laptop In A Beautiful Home

It may seem counterintuitive, but keeping your air conditioner running all day may actually be more efficient than turning it off and on throughout the day. That’s because every time you start up the AC unit, it takes extra energy to cool down the entire house again, especially if it has been off for hours and the house has gotten very warm. If you want to save money on your energy bills this summer, try keeping your air conditioner running all day rather than turning it off and on every few hours.

  • EXCEPTION TO THE RULE! Of course, if you are going to be away for a vacation or business trip for several days in a row, turning your AC off is the best option to save money on energy. Keeping it running only benefits you if you are in the home or away for only a few hours at a time (work, school, etc.).

6) Close Blinds & Curtains

Man Servicing A Wall Mounted Mini Split

Simple window treatments like curtains or blinds can make a big difference in how much energy your air conditioner has to use. By closing them during the hottest hours of the day, you can prevent warm sunlight from entering the house and heating up the interior. This helps your AC keep temperatures cooler without having to work as hard, allowing you to save money on your monthly utility bills.

Heat passes through the glass of your window and gets sent right into your home. Even simple plastic blinds can make a huge difference in the temperature inside your house. For the best protection against this magnified heat, consider hanging up blackout curtains. These heavy curtains block out both sunlight and heat coming in from the windows.

7) Use Ceiling Fans

Ceiling fans are a great way to supplement air conditioning and help keep temperatures more comfortable inside. If you leave the fan running while using your AC unit, it will help circulate cool air throughout the house more quickly so that the AC doesn’t have to work as hard. This simple step can significantly reduce your energy bills because the cool air can fill up the room more quickly, and that means you don't have to set your thermostat as low in order to feel the cool air in a particular room.

8) Seal Ducts & Vents

Man working on Ductowork CMMC Aeroseal

One of the best ways to save money on your air conditioning bill this summer is by sealing up leaky ducts and vents. Leaky ducts can cause a significant amount of energy loss, leading to higher cooling costs. Sealing up leaky ductwork and vents is surprisingly simple if done properly. First, locate any visible cracks or gaps in the joints between sections of ductwork. Then use sealant or metal-backed tape to fill them up. Be sure to check around windows and doors as well for any drafts that could be allowing warm air into the house from outside. Caulk or weatherstripping is great for filling such gaps.

While this is an easy enough project for someone with a bit of experience, you don't want to risk damaging your vents or HVAC system if you have never dealt with ductwork before. Clean Air will happily take care of any AC maintenance you need in the Bellingham area! Contact us today for more information or to schedule a service appointment. We look forward to keeping you and your home cool this summer!