15 Ways to Reduce Air Conditioning Costs in Houston
Are you burdened by escalating utility bills this summer? To cut AC costs without sacrificing comfort, you should adopt energy-saving habits, implement low-cost changes and make strategic long-term investments. Here are 15 proven tips to try.
Adopt Good Energy Habits
Trimming AC expenses may be easier than you think. Here are some absolutely free ways to ease your monthly utility bills:
1. Keep curtains and blinds closed: About 76 percent of the sunlight that hits standard double-pane windows enters as heat. By closing out the sun with insulating curtains and blinds over your south- and west-facing windows, you minimize solar heat gain in the afternoon and reduce the demand for air conditioning.
2. Turn up the temperature: You can save up to three percent on your AC expenses for each degree you elevate the temperature. Try turning up the temperature on your thermostat a bit higher than usual and operating a fan to make up the difference.
3. Switch off the lights when not in use: Lights, especially incandescent bulbs, produce quite a lot of heat. Turning them off when you aren't in the room lowers the interior heat gain your AC must combat.
4. Use appliances strategically: Wait to use heat-generating appliances like the oven, dryer and dishwasher until the cooler part of the day. This technique lightens your AC’s burden during the hot afternoon, minimizing your bill and maximizing home comfort.
5. Run kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans: Eliminate heat and humidity while cooking and showering to reduce the workload on your air conditioner.
Invest in Low-Cost Upgrades
If you’re willing to part with a few dollars, you can put an even bigger dent in your cooling costs. Here are some wallet-friendly enhancements to consider:
6. Purchase a programmable thermostat: If you still have a manual thermostat, think about upgrading. A programmable thermostat automatically adjusts the temperature according to your schedule. You can trim AC costs by up to 10 percent by setting the temperature back 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours each day. Thanks to automatic recovery periods, you can appreciate these savings without aggravation or discomfort.
7. Schedule regular maintenance: Your air conditioner should have scheduled checkups to make sure it runs properly and efficiently. Maintenance visits every spring also offer a chance to identify and deal with minor issues before they grow into expensive repairs. This small, predictable cost provides a tremendous return on investment through improved efficiency and can lengthen the unit's life.
8. Seal leaks: In many homes, leaky windows and doors are responsible for around 25 percent of its cooling energy use. Seal those troublesome leaks with caulk and weatherstripping.
9. Add reflective window film: Window film reflects the sun’s rays to the exterior, decreasing solar heat gain. This budget-friendly upgrade is an ideal way to improve your older windows’ efficiency without updating them.
10. Upgrade to LED lights: LEDs produce almost no heat and consume far less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. These properties help keep your home more comfortable and lower lighting costs as well.
Consider Long-Term Home Investments
If you’re ready93 to make more significant improvements, consider the following investments to cut AC costs in the long run:
11. Insulate the attic: Hot air can leak through the ceiling if your attic isn’t sufficiently insulated. Peer inside the attic, and if you don’t see a deep, even layer of insulation, think about adding more. Depending on what type of insulation you select, you might need to hire a professional for the job.
12. Plant trees for natural shade: Planting leafy trees on the south and west sides of your house obstructs sunlight and creates a cool microclimate around your home, naturally reducing your cooling demands.
13. Replace your windows: Old, single-pane windows let in a large amount of heat, forcing your HVAC system to work harder. Buying new double- or triple-pane windows with state-of-the-art glazing features improves your home’s air-tightness and keeps the interior cooler.
14. Upgrade your AC system: Operating an aging air conditioner hurts your wallet more than you might think. Upgrading from a decade-old 10 SEER model to a modern-day 15 SEER unit can save you 33 percent on your air conditioning bills. The savings capacity of this purchase is even greater if you’re able to invest more up front.
15. Install solar panels: Solar panels convert sunlight into electricity to power your cooling system and other electric appliances. The ongoing cost savings, together with tax incentives available through 2035, make this a valuable investment.
Save More on Your AC in Houston With Help From Church Services
At Church Services, we make the extra step to deliver133 top-notch HVAC services that help cut air conditioning costs in the long run. Because of our top-quality products, Expert knowledge and attention to detail, we feel secure backing our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. To learn more about how we can help lower your summer air conditioning costs, please reach out to the Experts at Church Services. Schedule your appointment today by calling 713-396-3760!