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Useful Tips To Reduce Home Energy Use

Written by julienewman76
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With the planet officially in peril and after being exposed to a number of inconvenient truths, it is high time to do our part in reducing the use of energy during the two most splendid seasons of the year: summer and spring. Here are some useful tips to help reduce your energy consumption at home.

Properly set the thermostat. Did you know that the simplest and most economical way to reduce the energy consumption of your air conditioning unit is to properly set the thermostat? The first thing you have to do is set the thermostat at the highest summer setting at which you are most comfortable. Typical settings are around 78 degrees F for summer cooling. Set the thermostat and leave it at that temperature. Continuously adjusting the thermostat can be very inefficient. Don’t forget to turn on the fan switch to ensure that the air in your home is always being circulated, thus preventing hot and cold pockets from forming.

Annually tune up your air conditioning units. Tune ups are not just for cars; you can also do it for your air conditioner. Studies show that homeowners having annual service to their systems spend an average of $30 less each month because of increased efficiency. Lack of regular maintenance is also the number one cause of system breakdowns and costly repairs.

Keep the air filter clean. Experts believe that the easiest way to ensure your system is efficiently operating is by keeping the air filter clean. You can opt to do this yourself or, if you have allergies, you can have a professional do the cleaning for you.

Wait for 24 hours before powering up. If you have disconnected the power to your central air conditioning system in the winter, wait 24-hours after turning power back on to your air conditioner before running it. The compressor needs this time to warm-up and work properly.

Control direct sunlight. As much as you would like natural light, having too much will bring up your energy consumption. Keep shades and curtains drawn to reduce radiant heat from the sun. Install awnings and/or plant shade trees by southern facing windows to keep the hottest rays of the summer sun from shining directly into your house. This will reduce the cooling load in the summer, making your air conditioning system operate more economically.

Keep your vents and grilles unobstructed. Arrange your furniture and drapes so that all output vents and intake grilles are free from obstruction. This will also reduce the cooling load on your air conditioner and allow for more economical operation.

Keep your air conditioning unit and coils clean and unobstructed. Did you know that air conditioning units require at least 12-18 inches of clearance for proper performance? Clear and cut back any shrubs or bushes around your AC unit and keep it free of fallen leaves, grass clippings, foliage, and other dirt and debris. For optimum performance, keep the unit’s coils clean by re-reading the manual and following the steps on how to clean it.

Install an attic fan. Attics can reach temperatures of 140-150 degrees F and this build up of hot air can overload your cooling system. It will also make the top floor of your home very uncomfortable. By installing a thermostatically controlled attic fan can drastically decrease the build up of hot air, thus saving you money and increasing the life of your cooling system.

These are but a few of the simple yet effective ways to reduce energy consumption at home. Times like these, we really have to learn how to cut costs.

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