An air conditioner, or AC, consumes a considerable amount of energy to remove heat from the air of an enclosed room. The more powerful it is, the more work can be done. However, certain factors could hamper its performance. Sometimes, it’s the very state of the room that contributes to its ineffectiveness. You will be forced to work the AC more than what is recommended and your electric bill will increase. To prevent that from happening, here are 11 tips that can help you reduce consumption.
Upgrade the existing windows
Windows can affect the temperature of the room eve when the AC is turned on. Due to old design or damaged, the windows may let cool air escape, encouraging you to lower the temperature to compensate. Try upgrading to a newer set of windows that will help prevent the AC from overcompensating.
Seal the installed windows
Since windows are meant to be open, it is not surprising if certain physical issues emerge. This can be in a form of cracks or holes that existed before the AC was installed. To solve such a problem, it will be practical to apply sealants on window cracks or invest in a window cover.
Invest in a Programmable Thermostat
You may only need to switch the AC on or off, adjust the temperature level or set it on ‘swing’, but there can be features that will make it even more comfortable to use. You can have each usage of the AC scheduled with fixed settings. That way, you can be assured that the AC is not being overworked, even when you can’t be attentive. A programmable remote controller can be the very gadget you may need for convenience.
Utilize the Ceiling Fans
Ceiling fans are also good air regulators. As you turn off the AC, the air in the room can still be cold. Utilize ceiling fans to recirculate the cold air until it gets back to its room temperature. You can alternate the usage from AC to ceiling fans, depending on which is more needed. It may be tiresome, but it can be effective in trimming down the costs.
Replace the Air Filters in the HVAC
As the air filters collect dust and other particles, it will become less effective in filtering. It will be more difficult to circulate the air and you will be tempted to lower the temperature and prolong the usage of AC. Having it cleaned or replaced regularly can prevent that from happening.
Avoid Indoor Cooking
Cooking indoors with the AC operating might put a strain on it. The heat from the cooking can be too much for the AC to remove, which then will provide cool air, only to be reheated by the ongoing cooking. A quick fix is to turn off the AC and use ceiling fans instead, with the kitchen windows opened accordingly or you can cook in the backyard when possible to prevent compromising the users of the AC.
Reduce Exposure to Sunlight
Sunlight can pass through any transparent or translucent glass. The heat radiated can still be absorbed by the air inside the enclosed room and will contribute to the increased temperature. To reduce exposure to sunlight, install curtains or window blinds or have large plants block the sunny areas.
Insulate Attics and Walls
Air can also leak through the walls and up to the attic. The air in between can be as hot as the outside, which can be transferred to the air inside the room. To minimize the leakage of heat, add appropriate insulation inside the walls and in the attic.
Stay on Lower Ground in the Daytime
Cold air is much denser than hot air; therefore, if your house has a second floor, the bulk of the cold air is on the lower floor. You can stay there and set the AC’s thermostat at temperatures that are not that low for the majority of the day.
Have Your AC System Serviced
Even though the AC is still in good condition, you may want to prevent failures at the moment when it needed the most. A regular servicing of the AC is recommended, even if its condition is still in great shape. You can be assured that it will be performing efficiently.
Invest in Solar Panels
Installation and operation of solar panels may require a large initial investment, but in the long run, it will save you from electrical costs. You can even gain profit from the electrical companies with your excess energy absorbed from the sunlight. Other alternatives or renewable energy sources are acceptable as long as it is feasible. With an appliance like AC, the demand for energy can be great, especially if used for long hours. You need professional help in planning the whole thing though.
AC can consume a lot of electrical energy, even if it is branded as energy-efficient. Habits and awareness contribute unknowingly to the added workload of the AC and will soon be affecting its performance. If you are looking for optimal use of the AC, as long as it is feasible, invest in renewable energy sources as your electricity provider. Not only can you fully enjoy your AC’s capability, you can contribute to the minimization of reliance on power plants, which is good for the environment. If you plan to buy an AC unit, you can check our detailed AC buying guide.