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Written By Ryan MerchantPublished 05/16/22
Once those hot summer days arrive, it can be tempting to crank the air conditioning to feel some relief. It’s not wise to overdo it, though. Turning up the air conditioning doesn’t make your home cool down any faster, and overtaxing your system can make a breakdown much more likely—then you’ll really feel the heat.
There are more energy-efficient ways to keep your house cool in the summer. Supplement your air conditioner usage with these home cooling tips.
Maybe the most efficient way to keep house-cool temperatures is ensuring that cool air can’t escape—and warm air can’t get in. Weather stripping is inexpensive and remarkably effective at plugging up drafty gaps in doors and windows. In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy says that appropriately applied weather stripping can cut energy bills by as much as 20%.
Weather stripping is no match for the hot sun, though. Stripping will keep cooler air inside, but you’ll want window treatments to keep sunlight from overheating your home. Cellular or honeycomb blinds are specially designed to trap heat. Solar blinds are another option for blocking out the intense sun.
If you can’t justify the expense of installing new blinds, even some inexpensive curtains can help. Draw your curtains when the sun is at its strongest.
As a bonus, weather stripping and window treatments can keep your home warmer in the winter, too.
Servicing the air conditioner should be on everyone’s summer home maintenance checklist. A few simple tasks can improve your air conditioner’s efficiency by 15%.
First, be sure to clean or replace your air conditioner’s filter. If you have central air, you can likely find your filter at the end of the return duct. If you have a window unit, the filter is often right behind the front grill. A clean filter facilitates airflow, making it easier for the air conditioner to function properly.
Also consider cleaning the evaporator and condenser coils. These can become covered in dust and grime, which function as a kind of insulation. Wiping down the coils with a damp rag will help your unit more efficiently cool your home.
High humidity is often what makes the intense summer heat especially unbearable. Humidity can cause other problems too, such as warping wood, facilitating mold growth, and triggering asthma and allergies. A dehumidifier removes moisture from the air, making your environment much more comfortable.
Remember that the moisture a dehumidifier pulls from the air has to go somewhere. Water will collect in the unit’s reservoir, which you’ll need to empty periodically.
A programmable thermostat is an essential modern update to your home. There are many different models on the market, but all use different data inputs to set the ideal temperature in your home. If the system knows you’re not at home, it will limit the use of air conditioning. If the temperature outside ticks up, the thermostat will trigger your air conditioning to kick on. This optimization can cut energy waste by some 10%.
Don’t forget about heat you might be generating yourself. When the weather becomes stifling, avoid running too many indoor appliances. Use your washing machine, dishwasher, and dryer early in the morning or late at night when temperatures are cooler. Rethink your meals to avoid using your oven for a prolonged period. If possible, cook on an outdoor grill, and avoid stovetop cooking that generates a great deal of steam.
Following the tips outlined above will keep you from overtaxing your air conditioner, but unexpected breakdowns still do happen from time to time. The last thing you want is to be without an air conditioner on a scorching afternoon in July.
A home warranty with HVAC or air conditioner coverage could keep the heat at bay. Liberty Home Guard’s plans cover ducted electrical central air conditioners, electric wall air conditioners, window units, and ductless mini-splits. We also provide coverage for a slew of other appliances and amenities that keep you cool in the summer, from swamp coolers and ice machines to home pools.
If any covered item malfunctions, all you have to do is submit a quick claim on our website. We’ll have a reliable technician to your home as soon as possible to remedy the problem. You won’t even have to foot the repair bill. Use our website to start building a plan that matches your needs and lifestyle. You can also talk it through with our team by calling (866)-761-1853.