October 31, 2016
Fall is at your doorstep and winter is fast approaching, but have you prepared to set your AC to give you the perfect temperature, yet save on your electricity bills? It may seem difficult to save energy without getting frozen. However, by taking just small steps, you can welcome the fall with open arms without being too hard on your pocket. Here’s what you can do.
The most important thing to do is setting your AC temperature in accordance with the temperature outside. During fall and winter, 17-19°C is a good temperature to meet your comfort and energy saving needs.
Next, get ceiling fans if you don’t already have them. Fans can make you feel nearly 3 to 8 degrees cooler than room temperature. An AC consumes more energy than a fan and hence, you can use a fan to save your money.
Most of the AC units have a built-in timer. You can replace this with a programmable timer to put your AC off when not in use for some time. You can switch it off when you leave home and set the timer to turn it on about half an hour before you return.
Moreover, you may want to make use of energy saver on your window AC unit which will turn off the fan along with the compressor when the desired temperature is achieved.
In order to save energy and to help your air conditioner system to work efficiently, you can make use of the heat from the sun during the daytime. Invite the warmth of the sun to your house by opening-up the curtains during the day and closing them during the night.
Choosing alternatives to HVAC central units can also be of great help. Mini split systems are a great choice. They save a lot of energy by cooling only a particular room and not the whole house.
Another option is geothermal systems. A geothermal system consumes 30-60% less energy than the typical HVAC systems. It is cheaper to run and can also heat the water too.
You MUST insulate your house to cover any spots that may allow cold air to sneak in. You can make use of duct insulation to save energy and protect your AC system. Insulation reduces the work of the heating system.
Detect the air leaks in the house like around the cut-through areas for pipes, unfinished spaces behind closets, etc. and seal those spots. You can add caulk or weather-stripping to seal the leaks.
Indoor lights produce a lot of heat. You can replace conventional lights with CFL bulbs to cut the heat and save energy. Further, try to reduce the heat from cooking by making use of microwave oven or by moving your gas oven to some open space along with some exterior wall.
Maintaining your heating system is crucial for its efficient working. Therefore, schedule service at regular intervals and replace any faulty apparatus. Cleaning of the flue vent regularly is very important. Further, it is advisable to replace your furnace filter once in a month or as per the need.
These few things can make your fall comfortable and beautiful while helping you save on your energy bills. These little efforts will go a long way without burdening you or your pocket. Have a happy fall!