If your home’s utility bills send shivers down your spine, especially during Jacksonville’s hot summer months, it is time to make some changes. One potential solution is to upgrade to high-efficiency heating and air conditioning equipment. But what if buying a new system is not in the budget this year? You can make no-cost or low-cost small changes around your home that, when combined, will make a big impact on your utility bills and put money back in your pocket throughout the year.
Changes that Improve HVAC Efficiency
Improving the efficiency of your HVAC system helps save money throughout the year. During the summer, your air conditioner use can account for almost 40 percent of your home’s electric bill. Try these changes to increase its efficiency to save money while maintaining the comfort in your home:
- Change the filters in your system monthly or sooner as needed to maintain optimal air flow to HVAC system
- Keep your system’s returns and vents clean and clear of obstructions
- Switch your ceiling fans to turn clockwise during the summer to keep cooler air lower in your living spaces and to keep air moving that works to keep you cooler
- Keep shades or curtains closed during the sunniest times of the day to reduce heat coming in
- Use a programmable thermostat and keep it set to “AUTO” to avoid leaving the air conditioning on while you are away from home
- Keep your air conditioner set a little higher – 78 degrees
- Repair weather stripping or caulk around your windows and doors to prevent outdoor air from getting in and conditioned air from getting out
Save Electricity, Save Money
If your home is like most, you likely have some opportunities to reduce your electricity use, not just during the summer, but throughout the entire year. The following small changes can really add up to big savings each month.
- Unplug energy vampires around your house that continue to trickle small amounts of electricity even when not in use, such as:
- Chargers for small electronics like tablets or smartphones
- Computers and laptops
- Small kitchen appliances like toasters, blenders or microwaves
- Other electronics like smart home speakers or gaming consoles
- Put your lights on a timer and use LED bulbs and lighting fixtures when possible instead of incandescent lights that generate heat and waste energy
- Do laundry with cold water as much as possible
- Take cooler showers if you have an electric water heater
- Hang your laundry to dry instead of using your dryer
- Minimize use of your oven
Conserving Water Saves Money
Wasting water around your home can also be costly, too! You can save water by:
- Taking shorter showers
- Putting your lawn sprinklers on timers
- Fixing any leaks from faucets, pipes or toilets in your home
- Waiting until your dishwasher is full before running it
- Washing full loads of laundry instead of a few items
- Turning off the water while brushing your teeth
With very little work and very little money you can reduce your monthly utility bills and pocket your savings in no time! But don’t forget…keeping your HVAC system running at its optimal performance will go a long way to save you money throughout the year.
Don’t forget to schedule your heating and cooling system’s annual maintenance with Snyder Heating & Air Conditioning. This small investment will pay you back with longer system life, more efficient operation, fewer emergency repair calls and less breakdowns over the life of your system. Contact us today to schedule your maintenance service, new heating or air conditioner installation or any needed repairs.