At some point, we have all been shocked at huge electrical bills received during the summer months. This surge is usually attributed to the fact that the AC system is turned ‘ON’ for long periods in cooling the house.
With that said most people think that it is more economical to turn ‘OFF’ their AC system while at work and turned ‘ON’ only when experiences unbearable heat. However, turning ‘OFF’ the AC is not a solution for you will still notice the surging of power bills. Surprising but true!
Fortunately, below are some valuable tips regarding the best time to run your air conditioner in order to make cooling efficient while saving you some cash especially during the summer season.
Keep the AC turned ‘ON’
According to Jennifer Thorne, a program director at the American Council for Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEE), it’s more economical to leave your AC turned ‘ON’ during the day. Unless you’re out for several days, on vacation, or simply spending the night somewhere else.
The logic behind this notion is that air conditioners are actually meant with the function to work more in maintaining constant temperature at home; hence, by leaving them turned ‘ON’ they can maintain such temperatures using lesser units with lesser workload in keeping the area cool.
On the other end, if you decide to switch the AC ‘OFF’ when away from the house or only choose to turn it ‘ON’ during peak temperatures of the day, the AC unit will need more energy to cool the house down. The system will be working harder and your wallet is paying the price. For this reason, it’s best to turn ‘ON’ the AC in the morning while the house is still moderately cool and keep it at a constant temperature all day.
Upgrade the AC thermostat
By having a smart programmable digital thermostat, you can control the desired temperatures remotely using a special app on your phone. You can set the desired temperatures depending on the time of day or day of the week to have the AC automatically adjust as preferred.
For instance, you can program the thermostat to run at 85 degree Fahrenheit (29.4 °C) during the day and set it to automatically fall to 80 degree Fahrenheit (26.6 °C) during the evenings before you get home. This way you can ensure a comfortable air temperature, as well as big savings on your power bills.
It would also be smart to set your thermostat at a warmer setting during the night because you do not need as much cool air while sleeping. Give due attention to the hours and days of the week you are most frequent at home and program your thermostat accordingly. Remember not to set the difference of temperatures too far apart (5 degree Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature difference) or your air conditioner will work extra hard to make your needed changes.
Additionally, the positioning of the thermostat is crucial to the efficiency of the Air conditioning system. For instance, placing it on a wall next to a hot window will result in a higher electrical bill since the thermostat will use more power than usual thinking that the room is hotter than the case.
Leverage ceiling fans
Using a ceiling fan is also another way to ensure your AC runs more efficient without increasing your power bill according to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC). This is because ceiling fans can make the room temperature cooler.
Hence, you can turn ‘ON’ the AC after having the ceiling fan somewhat reduce the room temperature. The AC running will not use as much energy in cooling down the house than what it should without the help of the ceiling fan. This should save you some money.
You may also want to install a smart ceiling fan which will allow you to have easy control whenever you want to switch ‘ON’ or ‘OFF’ the fan as well as adjust speeds via an app.
Control room temperature
While it is more efficient to keep the air conditioner running while away for the day, but if you’re out for extended periods of time, it is definitely better to turn it ‘OFF’. Having your AC running while on vacation is just crazy.
But there’s something you can do. The opening of window curtains lets the sun enter your house increasing room temperatures which can be very uncomfortable once you get home. Also, turning ‘ON’ your air conditioner at this point will surely require more energy to cool the room.
To control room temperature, you should close your blinds and curtains to prevent the escape of cold air and entry of heat before you leave. This should help block as much of the sun’s rays as possible. This way it won’t be much sweltering and you won’t be giving your air conditioner a hard time once you turn it ‘ON’.
Maintain cleanliness of your AC
Before you turn ‘ON’ your AC system, ensure that there are no dirty filters or particles in its aluminium blade which safeguard the condenser coils in the exterior. This is because dust obstructs and limits the movement of air crucial to the functioning of your AC.
As such, you must vacuum or replace the filters from time to time as well as clean the aluminium blades with a soft brush.
*Follow the above tips for at least three months and compare your utility bills to previous once. You’ll be surprised!