If we could all afford to keep our air conditioners running at full blast all day every day during the summer, we would, right? But alas, that is just not feasible for most homeowners. The costs of running your air conditioning in Northbrook, IL day and night throughout the summer season are high, and it’s not that great for the environment, either! You will also wear out your air conditioner much faster than normal, and find having to replace the system years before you thought you would need to.
So, while setting your thermostat at the lowest possible temperature so that it will blast cold air out on you 24/7 is not the best option, are there still ways to stay cool other than using your cooling system? Yes, there are, and you can save energy by doing so too. Read on for some tips.
Find Other Ways to Keep Cool
There are a number of ways to stay cool without running your air conditioner into the ground and suffering from high energy bills as a result. You probably already know you can wear lightweight cotton clothing to help stay cool. Drinking plenty of water, even at room temperature, is beneficial as well.
Plus, if temperatures drop below 78°F at night, which they almost always do in our area, then another option is to keep your windows open, allowing your home to cool down naturally. Then, close them as well as your blinds before the sun gets up too high the next day. Shading around the home will also keep out radiant heat—pay particular care to areas of your home with southern and western exposure.
Use a Programmable Thermostat
If you haven’t already upgraded to a programmable thermostat, you could be missing out on some serious savings! However even with one of these devices, there are homeowners who don’t know how to best use a programmable thermostat.
The best thing you can do is to take a look at the operator’s manual that came with your thermostat, do an online search, or call an HVAC technician to ensure you are using your programmable thermostat as you should. Generally speaking, there are a couple adjustments you can make when your system comes on that will help you save money:
- Keeping the thermostat at about 78°F throughout the day when nobody is home (and maybe even when people are at home, if it’s shady and breezy enough to let some natural cool air in).
- Set your air conditioner to raise its temperature by 10° when people are away or sleeping.
- Have the thermostat settings automatically readjust to your preferences 20-30 minutes before you plan to arrive home.
Try to Limit Use of High-Heat Appliances
We know this one can be tough. You probably like to do laundry during the day, or cook dinner in your oven after a long day of work, etc. Unfortunately, these appliances add unnecessary heat to your home that causes your air conditioner to work a lot harder than it should have to. Try using these high-heat appliances at night, instead.