Ways to Reduce Cooling Costs This Summer

It might surprise you to know that buying a bigger room air conditioning unit won't necessarily make you feel more comfortable during the hot summer months.

In fact, a room air conditioner that's too big for the area it is supposed to cool will perform less efficiently and less effectively than a smaller, properly sized unit. This is because room units work better if they run for relatively long periods of time than if they are continually switching off and on. Longer run times allow air conditioners to maintain a more constant room temperature. Running longer also allows them to remove a larger amount of moisture from the air, which lowers humidity and, more importantly, makes you feel more comfortable.

Sizing is equally important for central air conditioning systems, which need to be sized by professionals. If you have a central air system in your home, set the fan to shut off at the same time as the cooling unit (compressor). In other words, don't use the systems central fan to provide circulation, but instead use circulating fans in individual rooms.

Tips to Keep Your Cool

Unexpected Money Savers

You can save as much as ten percent a year on your heating and cooling bills by simply turning your thermostat back ten to 15 degrees for eight hours each day. You can do this automatically without sacrificing comfort by installing an automatic setback or programmable thermostat.

Using a programmable thermostat, you can adjust the times you turn on the air conditioning according to a pre-set schedule. As a result, you don't operate the equipment as much when you are asleep or when the house or part of the house is not occupied.

  • Programmable thermostats can store and repeat multiple daily settings (six or more temperature settings a day) that you can manually override without affecting the rest of the daily or weekly program. When shopping for a programmable thermostat, be sure to look for the Energy Star label.

And Even More Ideas...

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This article was excerpted from Energy Savers: Tips on Saving Energy & Money at Home. For details on how to obtain a copy of Energy Savers, click here.

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