As temperatures rise, your electric bill can get out of hand from running your air conditioner to cool your home. While some amount of AC is ideal to stay comfortable, there are other creative ways to reduce your home’s summer energy use. Here are some of our favorites.
Use a Smart Thermostat
Air conditioning is the primary electricity expense for many households every summer, and using a smart thermostat will help reduce your energy use. You can shave 3% off your energy bill for every degree you raise your thermostat. Programmable thermostats and smart thermostats adjust the temperature depending on your activities. Schedule yours to a higher temperature when you’re away from home so you’re not wasting energy cooling an empty house.
Invest in an Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner
While there is no sense in upgrading your air conditioner if it’s in good shape and has been installed within the past decade, upgrading to a newer model that uses less electricity will reduce your home’s summer energy use. Models with good ratings for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) have been tested to demonstrate that they use significantly less energy than traditional appliances.
Unplug to Reduce Your Energy Use This Summer
You increase your energy bill each day by paying for plugged-in electronics you are not actively using. Video game consoles, televisions, computers, and chargers all add up, especially in houses with multiple family members. To reduce your home’s summer energy usage, unplug all power strips and unused devices when you leave the room instead of just turning them off. The difference won’t be drastic, but it will save you money.
Many people look forward to summer since it’s a chance to grill and enjoy delicious fresh food outside with friends and family. Fortunately, it’s also a great way to reduce your home’s summer energy use. Ovens and stoves can raise the temperature of your kitchen by over 10 degrees when you cook dinner inside. Instead, take things outside to the grill and your home will stay cool and comfortable.
Use Fans to Reduce Your Energy Use This Summer
If your home has ceiling fans, box fans, or other fans to circulate air, these are great tools to help reduce your home’s summer energy use. Some of the best ways to use fans without increasing your energy bill include:
- Use your ventilation fan in the bathroom when you shower and in the kitchen when you cook to remove warm, moist air and odors
- Placing a bowl filled with ice in front of a fan for a blast of icy air
- Ensuring your ceiling fans are running counterclockwise to create a windchill effect