Summer Air Conditioning Doesn’t Have to Cost a Fortune

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average electric bill for houses in the summer months (June through August) is $395 per household. That works out to an average of $131.67 per month. Compared to the average monthly bill of $95.66 (as reported by Mother Earth News), Americans are spending a little over a third more on electricity during the hot summer months.

But what is a person to do? Should we stop using our air conditioners during the summer? Absolutely not. I am a practical environmentalist, and I thoroughly believe that such extremes are not realistic or necessary. Rather, we can make a few adjustments to how we use our air conditioners. In the process, we will save a great deal of money and help the planet while we are at it.

I live in California, and there is no denying that it is hot in the Summer. Tonight, it was still 85 degrees at 8 p.m. Did I have my AC on? You bet I did. And if it is still this hot tomorrow, I’ll run it then too. However, you can do what I have done and significantly reduce your bill with a couple of small changes.

This is the best time to make use of your air conditioner and California heat is quite merciless when at its peak form and dehydration can take it out of you so I always make it a point to lookup blaux portable ac reviews online for a replacement at every second summer season.

Programmable Thermostats

A programmable thermostat is one very easy way to reduce the money you spend cooling your house. Basic models are available for as little as $19, and go up from there. They are simple to install, and according to the Energy Department, using a programmable thermostat can save you up to $150 per year.

A few simple tricks will make the most of the savings from this simple do-it-yourself project. Most importantly, set your thermostat to shut off your air conditioning while you are away. You can even program the system to begin cooling 15 minutes before you normally arrive home. Upon your arrival, your home will be comfortable, and you will have saved an entire day’s electricity use. Set your thermostat to change to a higher temperature (less cooling) after you go to sleep. This will allow you to be comfortable while drifting off, but saves you money once asleep. Raising the average temperature of your home even a few degrees can lead to dramatic energy savings. According to the Energy Department, you can save as much as 18 percent by setting your thermostat to 78 degrees rather than 72 degrees.

Use a Fan

There is nothing brilliant about this idea, but it remains effective. A fan makes you feel cooler by creating minor wind chill. On average, a fan (ceiling or house fan) can make a person feel 4 degrees cooler. When used in combination with an air conditioner, this can mean big savings. By setting your thermostat 4 degrees hotter, and using a fan, you will save a lot of electricity from running the air conditioner, and yet you will feel just as comfortable. And the savings can be impressive. According to the Glendale Department of Water and Power, the average ceiling fan costs $1.05 per month to run. In comparison, and air conditioner can cost around $21 per month to run, or more. So by allowing your fan to assist your cooling system, you stand to save a good deal of money each month.

Be Aware of The Outside Temperature

Like I said, tonight is a warm one, and people will be running their air conditioners throughout the evening. However, last week we had a cooler spell, and my neighbors were still running their air conditioners. It could not have been more than 60 degrees out, and many of my neighbors had their homes closed up, and they were running their air conditioners all night long. Why? If it is cooler outside than it is in, open your windows throughout the house, and let the breeze blow through. If you open windows on opposite sides of your home, you will get natural cross ventilation. There is just no reason to waste them money cooling your house, when mother nature will do it for you.

With just a few small changes, you can save a lot of money and still be comfortable. Try it, and enjoy keeping your hard earned cash.