With temperatures already in the 90’s this weekend here in Middle Tennessee, your A/C bills might be astronomical this summer! To avoid spending all of your extra cash on air conditioning, try one of these great tips for keeping your home cool for the next few months:
– Maintain your air conditioning. At least every season, or even twice a season if you’ve been running the A/C often, have your unit or units serviced by a professional. They’ll clean them and ensure that they’re cooling properly. Changing the filters every few months will also help your units run more efficiently.
– Upgrade your unit. If your unit is older than fifteen years, start saving to purchase a new higher efficiency one soon. When replacing your unit, have a professional measure your space to make sure that your new unit is the correct size for your home. Too much or too little air conditioning for your home can create problems and high costs.
– Add shade. Plant trees around your air conditioning unit, being sure that they aren’t so close to inhibit access to the unit when it needs to be serviced. Plant shade trees around the house but don’t plant them on the south side of your home if you want to take advantage of solar heating during the colder winter months. Close shades and window blinds during the day – especially on windows that face the south and west.
– Turn on your bathroom and kitchen fans. Exhaust fans in both rooms pull out hot air that rises when you cook or take a shower, allowing rooms to stay cooler without the A/C needing to work harder.
– Take the cooking outside. Try to avoid using the oven, stove and other hot appliances that will increase the temperature of your kitchen. Turn on the grill outside to keep your home cooler and your food tasting good!
– Use alternate sources for cooling. If you don’t already have them, install ceiling fans throughout your home. In the summer, ceiling fans should be running counter clockwise in order to push cooler air in a downward direction. Even a slow turning ceiling fan can increase the air flow enough to lower your A/C setting a couple of degrees.
– Don’t waste cool air. Make sure that cool air isn’t escaping through cracks in your doors, windows or air conditioning ducts. Add weather stripping and caulking wherever you need additional sealing. If you have unused rooms in your home, close the air vents and doors so that air instead circulates into other rooms.
How do you keep your home cool during the summer months?