We’re headed for another hot Oklahoma summer, with higher utility bills to match the higher temps. But the bills don’t have to sky rocket every season if you’re smart about energy efficiency. It’s possible to keep your home cool (even in triple-digit weather) without blasting the air conditioning on high 24 hours a day. Check out our energy saving tips for a cooler, more efficient warm weather home.
Be Smarter About the Thermostat
- Set the thermostat a few degrees higher without compromising on your comfort. Even a couple degrees higher than normal will help in reducing the energy bill. The Consumer Energy Center suggests 78 degrees, but that might be too warm for some households.
- When you are away, turn up the thermostat to a warmer temperature (5-8 degrees according to Energy Star). In the spring and early summer, try turning it off altogether when you leave the house.
- Install a programmable thermostat to more closely monitor the temperature throughout the day. This will allow you to keep the house warmer during the periods you are away – and ensure a comfortable temperature when you return. You can also leave for an extended vacation knowing that the house will be temperature controlled.
- A ceiling fan won’t cool a room, but it can work with your air conditioning to make the most of the cooled air. A ceiling fan in your living room will allow you to raise your thermostat about 4 degrees without compromising your comfort.
- Turn off the ceiling fan when you aren’t in a room.
- Installing a whole house fan is a great way to keep your home cooler in the summer. A whole house fan is permanently installed in the attic and is used in the late evening or early morning to exhaust hot air from the house. Cooler air is drawn in through open windows, effectively lowering the indoor temperature.
Use Appliances Sparingly
- In the summer, use appliances that produce substantial heat sparingly. These include the oven, dishwasher and gas-powered stove tops.
- Electronics that generate heat should also be used frugally. Computers, hair dryers, televisions and stereos all create heat and can add to an already warm environment.
- Revisit your lights and look into bulbs that run cooler and are more efficient. A few of the more popular bulbs on the market are halogen incandescents, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), and light-emitting diodes (LEDs).
- Only use the dishwasher and washing machine when you have a full load.
- When possible, line dry your clothing.
Maintain Your A/C or HVAC
- Schedule annual maintenance for your air conditioner or HVAC. This will ensure that it runs at maximum efficiency and doesn’t require constant repairs.
- Clean the vents/registers on a monthly basis with a vacuum to ensure a clear pathway for the air.
- Make sure that your thermostat is placed away from appliances or places in the home that run hot. A thermostat can sense the heat and will cycle longer and more often if it gets a false temperature reading. Read our blog on thermostat troubleshooting.
- Change out the HVAC filter at least once a month during the peak summer months.
Follow these simple tips and make this summer a cool, comfortable – and affordable one!
Call us for for help with a new thermostat or HVAC maintenance this spring and summer with NO OVERTIME CHARGES: (405) 794-8900.