When soaring temperatures cause sweltering heat, summer can take a serious toll on your electricity bill. It’s hard to come up with ways to keep costs down when you want to stay cool indoors, but these three methods will help you cut costs while still keeping the temperature manageable. Read on to find top tips for staying cool on a budget this summer.
Set Up a Programmable Thermostat
Programmable thermostats are no longer considered top-of-the-line luxury items. Instead, they’re more affordable and commonplace than ever before. During the summer months, programmable thermostats can help you regulate the indoor temperature so you don’t have to keep the air conditioner running at full blast when you aren’t home.
The good news is that programmable thermostats are relatively inexpensive, and you can get a basic one for under $50. More advanced smart thermostats can even chart when you leave home and when you come back, so it can automatically create a temperature pattern based on your learned movements. Many smart models will also track energy use to let you know when you’re using the most and least energy. With these automation and energy saving features, both programmable and smart thermostats can save you a pretty penny during the summer months.
Use Curtains and Blinds
Image via Flickr by Scott Rubin
Summer scenery can be beautiful, but keeping your curtains or blinds open during the day can significantly increase your energy bill. When the sun shines through your windows, the additional heat raises the temperature inside your home. This means your HVAC unit has to work harder to regulate the indoor temperature. Take a thoughtful approach to curtains and blinds, and make sure to keep them closed in rooms you’re not actively using.
To save the largest amount of money, consider purchasing thermal curtains and install them in all of your windows. These additions will keep the sun’s heat out of your home while preventing conditioned air from leaking out. Thermal curtains can also keep warm air inside during the winter, so they’re a smart purchase for any home.
Keep Your HVAC Unit in Good Condition
While the two above tips can help you save money, what will save you the most is keeping your HVAC unit in great shape. If your air conditioner can’t perform its job smoothly, malfunctions and breakdowns can end up costing you a lot in the long run. Before the heat hits, have your local handyman look over your HVAC unit to make sure it doesn’t need maintenance or new parts.
You should also try an easy DIY method to keep the HVAC system running as smoothly as possible. Make sure to change the air filter regularly, since a dirty filter can prevent efficient airflow. This means your HVAC system has to work harder and use more energy, which can lead to higher utility bills and more frequent equipment breakdowns.
Just because you’re sweating outside doesn’t mean you have to feel overheated inside. Follow these three tips to keep your air conditioning bill in check over the summer and save some money while staying comfortable.
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