Shore Up Your Home for Energy Savings This Summer
Posted: June 3, 2016
Brevard County is on the cusp of a typical hot and sticky Florida summer, and that means it’s time for homeowners across the region to get on a few household tasks that will ensure the highest level of comfort and savings this cooling season.
The U.S. Department of Energy likes to remind us that heating and cooling the typical American home accounts for about half of the home’s annual energy bill, and that adds up to a decent chunk of change. The lower you can get your energy bills, the more money you’ll keep in your bank account, and lowering your energy usage is a simple matter of whipping your house into shape before the hottest time of the season is upon us.
Seal Air Leaks
Air entering your home through cracks and gaps in the envelope make your cooling system work harder to keep your home comfortable, and that costs you more money. To find air leaks, close your exterior doors and windows on a very windy day. Light a stick of incense, and pass it nearby common areas of leakage, including doors and windows, baseboards, recessed lighting fixtures, and service entrances. Seal air leaks with weatherstripping or silicone caulk.
Install Ceiling Fans
Although ceiling fans don’t cool rooms, they cool the people in the rooms, which means that you can turn up the thermostat a couple of degrees and still maintain a high level of comfort.
Have Your Cooling System Tuned Up
For each year your cooling system isn’t serviced, you can expect to pay up to five percent more for the energy it uses, according to the Department of Energy. So if it’s been three years since your last tune-up, you’re likely paying 15% more than necessary for cooling your home. A comprehensive tune-up is far less expensive than even minor repairs, and it improves the function of your system to save you energy dollars while increasing your comfort level and preventing common operating problems.
Install a Programmable Thermostat
The Department of Energy points out that a properly installed and operated programmable thermostat can net you $180 a year in energy savings. If you’re pretty handy, you can install it yourself, or your can have a trusted HVAC contractor do it for you. Set the thermostat back by ten degrees at night and when you’re gone for the day for the highest possible savings. You can program it to have the house cool as a cucumber by the time you wake up or return home.
Keep the Shades Drawn
Solar heat gain warms up your rooms faster than your cooling system can cool it down, which means your system is running almost constantly during the day if the sun is pouring through your windows. Keep the shades or curtains drawn during the day to combat heat gain and keep your rooms far cooler. Invest in blackout shades for the highest possible savings.
Shore Up Your Attic Insulation
Inadequate attic insulation will drive your energy bills through the roof–literally. ENERGY STAR recommends 12 inches of R-38 insulation for best results. Adding attic insulation is a fairly straightforward DIY task in most cases, but you can hire someone to do it for you for a reasonable price if you’d rather.
For more tips on saving energy in your home, contact us at Brevard Cooling today. We proudly serve all of Brevard County and enjoy a high level of customer satisfaction, thanks to our highly knowledgable and courteous technicians.