The summer heat has already arrived here in Atlanta, and that has many of us looking forward to outdoor sports, evening campfires, and trips to the beach. However, there’s one thing you may not be looking forward to this summer: high energy bills.
High summer energy bills are all too common in the Atlanta area because of how heavily we rely on our air conditioners. But did you know there are ways to lighten the load on your air conditioner, allowing you to run it less often and reduce home cooling costs? Here are five ways to reduce the need for air conditioning in your home.
Schedule AC Maintenance
Annual maintenance is essential for keeping your air conditioner running as efficiently as possible, yet many homeowners forget to schedule their annual tune-up when spring rolls around. Skipping maintenance forces your air conditioner to work harder and increases your risk of having to make a costly repair.
Schedule AC maintenance this spring to get your AC system running as efficiently as possible — and don’t forget to continue changing your air filters every one to three months as needed!
Upgrade to an Energy Efficient Air Conditioner
Many homeowners put off air conditioner replacement in an effort to save money, only to pay more in the long run due to costly repairs and higher energy costs.
If your air conditioner is approaching the end of its life span, consider upgrading to an energy efficient model for lower monthly energy costs. You might opt for an ultra energy efficient air conditioner, or you might consider making the switch to a heat pump — one of the most energy efficient cooling (and heating) options available.
Seal Air Leaks
Did you know that there are likely tiny air leaks along the exterior of your home which let valuable conditioned air escape year-round? Air leaks are especially common around windows, doors, wiring penetrations, electrical outlets, recessed lighting, and attic hatches.
Having these air leaks sealed by an insulation contractor will keep cool air inside your home all summer, so your air conditioner doesn’t have to work as hard to keep up.
Improve Home Insulation
An estimated 9 out of 10 homes in the Atlanta area are under-insulated, especially in the attic. Poor insulation allows unwanted summer heat to seep indoors, particularly in upper areas of the home.
Upgrading your home insulation with an insulation specialist will stabilize indoor temperatures all summer, reduce your home’s cooling (and heating) load, and minimize the need to run home air conditioning equipment. Plus, come winter time it will keep your home warmer when the temperatures outside start to drop!
Many homeowners open their windows in the summer to let in the fresh air, only to waste valuable energy by letting cool indoor air flow outside.
Installing a whole-house ventilation system gives stuffy indoor air a controlled path out of the home and replaces that air with fresh, filtered, temperature-controlled air from the outdoors. This way, you’re getting fresh indoor air without the wasted energy associated with open windows. Ventilation is especially important if you have recently made your home airtight with air sealing and insulation upgrades.