15 Ways to Keep Your Energy Bill Down During Summer
Clear your air conditioner’s filter
A filter that is clogged up or obstructed is an inefficient filter. Replace your air filter every one to three months. If you have a cleanable air filter, vacuum it out out to reduce the stress on your AC. As an added bonus, this will help keep the air in your home clean to breathe.
Install window film
Insulating window films can be put over windows to help conserve energy. They allow you to keep the windows open and stream sunshine in, but help reduce the heat gain from sunlight. As a result, your place will stay cooler with more efficiency. Window film kits are widely found and easy to put in yourself.
Close blinds and shades during the day
If you don’t want to install window film, consider closing blinds and shades in order to reduce heat gainvfrom the outside.
Use air conditioning efficiently
Don’t try to cool your house too much. 78 might be comfortable enough during the summer. If it is very hot outside, trying to cool your house too much can be a real drag on your AC and cooling costs. Install a programmable thermostat With a programmable thermostat, you can have the temperature of your house change based on time of day. This way, if you are gone to work during the day, your home doesn’t have to stay cool the whole time. You can save a lot of money by only cooling your home during strategic times.
Check your insulation
In attics or crawl spaces this should be fairly straight forward. Checking walls is more difficult and you may want to consult a professional.
Use a draft block
If you have any doors that aren’t completely sealed at the bottom when they close, think about picking up some draft blockers. These will help remove air flow when the door is closed. No need to try to air condition the outside!
Run a fan
Fans are usually less expensive to run than an air conditioner. If the outside temperature is close to tolerable and you are going to be staying in a room with a fan for awhile, consider turning the AC off and just using a fan.
Open a window
If nights are an acceptable temperature, consider turning off the AC and sleeping with a window open. You can extend the window rule to anytime the outside temperature is nice, like early morning or during/after a rain.
Cut down on energy leaks
Make sure lights and appliances are off. Some electronics will use small amount of energy even if they are turned of, so unplug things like toasters or cell phone chargers whenever you can. Spend time outside. When you spend time inside, you are no doubt running the AC, fan, electronics, lights, etc. When you spend time outside or out and about, these can all get turned off.
Use electricity during off-peak hours
If you can use your electronics and appliances during low demand times, like early morning or late night, you will likely be charged less by unit for your electricity.
Ask about discounts
Call your electricity provider and see if you are eligible for any discounts, especially if you are a low income household, on disability, or have limited income for other reasons. One option that doesn’t usually depend on income levels is a voluntary direct load control program. If this is available, you may be able to save money by agreeing to let the electricity provider to turn off power to your house during peak hours.
Use energy saving products
Use CFL or LED light bulbs instead of the traditional incandescent. Microwaves and grills use less energy than stoves and ovens. Try hanging your clothes out to dry instead of using the dryer.
Think about shade
This one might take awhile to work, but if you can plant shady trees on the south and west sides of your house this will help keep the structure cool.