Good news, Michigan: summer is upon us. We’re no longer shuddering from the cold but rather welcoming it inside our homes as a reprieve from the humid outdoors.
As plummeting cold as Michigan winters get, summertime temperatures here can soar – and so can our energy bills if we aren’t mindful throughout the season. To help you be more mindful, we’d like to share some energy-saving tips for this summer.
Of course, it all starts with your air conditioning unit. Properly using it doesn’t mean solely turning it on or off and forgetting about it. In terms of operating the unit, don’t wait until you feel hot to run the air conditioner. The unit will expend more energy as it cools the already-soaring temperature. Turn it on early, and the air conditioner takes up less energy in its functions.
For setting the unit’s temperature, Consumer Reports recommends keeping it at 78 degrees. Comfort is obviously a subjective feeling, but that temperature is enough where you can save money on utility bills. Each degree warmer you set the thermostat, it potentially saves about 2 percent.
Additionally, confirming all the supply and return registers are open and not blocked ensures the unit isn’t expending wasteful energy. Also make sure the unit outside is clear of debris and clean.
Once you have all the air conditioner aspects covered, consider your home as a whole. It’s about minimizing extra heat seeping inside or generating from the inside. Keep the shades and curtains close to block the sun from shining inside. Reducing the use of your oven also goes a long way, as it puts heat in the home faster than the air conditioner can remove it. If able, avoiding the use of major appliances all together – including washing machine, dishwasher, etc. – is recommended between the hours of 2 and 8 p.m.; this way they are in use during a period when the air conditioner is maintaining a cooler temperature at an easier rate.
Some summertime energy-saving tips not necessarily tied directly to the air conditioner include unplugging appliances and electronics that aren’t in use; setting the water heater to 120 degrees; washing clothes in cold water; and, cleaning the lint filter in the dryer after every use.
While you can enact all the above tips on your own, perhaps the biggest summertime energy-saving tip requires calling in a professional. Before the summer season ramps up, consider giving your air conditioner a tune-up. You can call in a technician who’ll pull the unit apart, clean it, get all the smaller particles out, check the drain pan, check electrical connections, and verify there aren’t any worn parts that could cause issues in the near future.
At All Seasons Heating, Cooling & Insulation, our technicians attend regular training sessions to stay up to date on industry developments. They are capable of improving the unit’s system capacity and extend its lifespan. Contact us today at 989-832-2752 to schedule an appointment.