How Can I Save Money on my AC Bills?
Summer heat warnings are not only hard on people but also on their budgets. You can’t weather the Texas summer without a reliable AC system, but the expenses that follow can be tough to handle too. Turning the AC system off may not be an option, but there are some practical tips to consider if you want to save money on your AC bills.
DIY AC Savings
There are several steps you can take to make sure that heat exchange and energy loss are limited in your house. Some of these options may involve a little extra vigilance. Examples include:
- Change your air filter monthly as it can restrict airflow and affect your system’s efficiency
- Watch for doors left open inadvertently, especially by children
- Keep air vents free of obstructions like furniture, clothing or other household items
- Use ceiling fans to make the indoor air feel cooler
These are issues that are easy to miss or forget about, but they can add up when they are ignored. Other household steps require minimal attention once they are completed. These include:
- Set your thermostat’s programming so that there isn’t a lot of fluctuation in temperature
- Install exterior window coverings, solar screens or thermal films to reduce heat gain
- Use white or light colors in exterior paint to avoid heat absorption
- Use a reflective coating on your roof to keep heat gain limited
While there are some initial costs involved in some of these steps, they can pay dividends for many years through lower AC bills.
Practical HVAC Services
There are several ways to reduce AC costs by working with your HVAC contractor. Annual air conditioner maintenance, for example, can keep your system working at its optimum, limiting energy loss and excessive bills. Some examples of how you can save money include:
- Refrigerant – a 10 percent undercharge can increase your cooling costs by 20 percent
- Coils – dirty coils can add as much as 20 percent to your cooling costs
- Duct leaks – leaky ducts can increase your cooling costs by up to 20 percent
A tune-up allows each of these issues to be checked so that appropriate measures to improve operations can be taken. Additionally, a planned maintenance program can keep repairs limited while ensuring that your system performs according to manufacturer guidelines.
Energy Saving Upgrades
One of the most important equipment upgrades you can make is to replace a non-programmable thermostat with a programmable model. The ability to dictate temperature adjustments is one of the most important ways you can keep system operation in check. You may also want to explore remote access models that can be monitored by smartphone app or PC.
If you are still battling the bills in spite of these steps, an energy audit is a great way to get a handle on issues that may not be visible. WA Air Conditioning is able to provide an evaluation of your Trinity, TX home as you endeavor to cut your AC costs.
June 5, 2013 10:41 pm