There are some ways to stay cool without turning up the AC. You can actually reduce your utility bills and stay cool at the same time! Some suggestions are:
- Shut your windows and drapes during the day to block out the sun and to keep warmer air outside. After the sun goes down, open up your drapes and windows to allow the cooler night air into your home to all it to be “recharged” with the night air.
- Try using a dehumidifier and Energy star area fans before lowering the thermostat. Humidity is what really makes us uncomfortable, so by removing the humidity we can be more comfortable in a little higher temperature. Also, ceiling fans are a good investment because they are helpful in both summer and winter.
- Did you know that 90% of the electricity used by incandescent light bulbs is lost in heat output? You can use compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) to reduce energy spent heating up the air and it’s a win-win because you’ll use less energy, too!
- Have you ever had an energy audit completed? It may be a good time to investigate if you should have more insulation in your home or Low-E windows installed to help prevent the sun from overheating your home. Both of these strategies will also help lower your winter fuel bills and may be eligible for a Federal Tax Credit.
- Another win-win investment is to plant deciduous trees around your house. Leafy trees keep a house cooler from the outside by the shade they provide and let the warming sunlight through the bare branches in winter.
Of course, using a high SEER air conditioner will help keep you cool more efficiently than a unit that is 15 or 25 years old. And a clean and fully pressurized system will have you covered for those times that it is just too warm and muggy for your “cheaper” strategies to work satisfactorily.