Have you found yourself using your air conditioner more often in recent years? Climate change is causing a greater need for indoor climate control, and single-family and multi-family property owners and operators have never been more concerned about the rising cost of air conditioning. After all, running the AC too often can cause an electric bill to skyrocket – more than half of energy consumption in U.S. households is used for heating and air conditioning.
Fortunately, there are a few strategies to increase the efficacy of your HVAC system and save money on your air-conditioning bills – and they don’t involve suffering through sweltering temperatures. Want to learn more? Check out the following three ways to save on cooling during the hottest months:
Wouldn’t you hate it if you were losing a good chunk of your cool air through leaks and poor insulation? Chances are that’s the case. Too many buildings fall victim to cooled air seeping outdoors through worn window seals, poorly insulated attics and tiny cracks.
A professional energy audit is one of the best ways to determine where your property is losing warm or cool air and wasting energy. Available at no cost from many utility providers, the audit consists of a certified home energy rater checking homes for leaks and recommending the best ways to increase efficiencies. The service is also offered by many local contractors for a nominal fee.
For those who prefer the do-it-yourself route, the Department of Energy also provides instructions for how to conduct your own home energy audit. The guide includes ways to discover and seal air leaks, inspect insulation and equipment, as well as develop a whole-home plan for efficient energy usage.
Regular, Pro-active Maintenance
For peak performance, HVAC systems must regularly be maintained. Performing seasonal maintenance on a unit helps property owners be aware of small mechanical problems before they become large – and expensive – issues.
“We can usually find things before they’re an issue for the customer… change your filter and make sure your blowers are working right inside the house.” HVAC professional Larry Corder told an Ohio television network, who recommended professional HVAC cleaning and maintenance at least once a year.
It also helps ensure higher air quality and excess energy consumption due to dirt or debris.
“It does stress the systems, especially if they’re dirty,” Corder explained. “There’s a coil that goes around the system. If that gets a lot of cottonwood built up on it, it’s like putting a sweater on the unit. So it’s not able to pull in good, clean air.”
While regular maintenance can prolong the life of an HVAC system and boost its energy efficiency, it’s often not the first thing on a property owner’s mind. Thanks to innovative technology, predictive maintenance is now an automated process. Motili’s technology platform, for example, tracks HVAC assets for a variety of single-family, multi-family and commercial proprieties. The platform provides advanced insight and optimizes energy savings by proactively monitoring your building systems and connects property owners and operators to a large network of contractors around the US.
Did you know that for every 1 degree over 78 degrees Fahrenheit you raise the thermostat settings during the hot summer months, you can reduce your home energy bill by 6-8 percent?
Now, just think of the savings you could achieve if you set it at… say… the upper 80s? While most people won’t feel comfortable sweating it out in temperatures pushing 90 degrees, a programmable thermostat lets property owners maximize their savings.
If occupants are away from home during a specific work schedule, for example, and the house is empty, the thermostat can be set as high as 88 degrees Fahrenheit until 30 minutes before you arrive home. Then, the temperature can automatically adjust to 78 degrees.
You’ll open the door to a comfortable atmosphere, while saving a bundle on your cooling costs. Now, smart thermostats provide the same benefits, but they can be programmed anytime from anywhere with your mobile device.