With warm humid summers, many Shenandoah Valley homeowners have high air conditioning bills. There are, however, many simple energy efficiency strategies that can have a big impact on your summer electricity bills!
Block the Summer Sun
Although many Virginia homeowners use window treatments for aesthetic or privacy reasons, they are also very useful in blocking heat from direct sunlight into your home. Did you know that some draperies can reduce heat gain through your windows by as much as 33%? Even just closing blinds on hot and sunny summer days could lower your cooling bill by 10 to 15%.
Air Conditioner Maintenance
Proper maintenance of your air conditioning system is an important aspect of home maintenance for Virginia homeowners. Maintenance helps keep energy costs down while extending the life of your cooling system. Restricted airflow, for example, makes your system work harder and use more energy, which increases wear and tear on the system.
Simple maintenance tasks, like replacing a dirty, clogged filter can reduce the energy use of your air conditioner by 5% to 15%, according to US Department of Energy. It is also important to inspect the evaporator coil and condenser coil and clean them when necessary.
Excel’s Comfort Advisors offer thorough, annual AC tune-ups to address how your unit functions. Our air conditioner system inspection also tests for refrigerant and ductwork leaks, measures airflow through the evaporator coil, and addresses other important items.
Avoid Producing Heat in the Home
There are a few small things homeowners can do to reduce how much heat they generate in the home. Incandescent and halogen light bulbs generate a lot of heat. Use LEDs or fluorescent light bulbs instead to cut down on energy use and reduce waste heat. When possible, load up your dishwasher and dryer and run full loads only, ideally at night because both units produce heat. Also, keep showers to early mornings and evenings if possible, and avoid using the oven during peak hot hours!