Summer and the high temperatures it brings increase energy usage. Here are some tips on how to save energy in the summer:
Phantom Load is the amount of electricity that is being drained by equipment when off or in standby mode. Homes have more than 20 phantom loads that can add up to $200 to your electricity bill each year. Nationally, phantom loads make up about 6% of our energy consumption. Any device with a clock display, remote control, or instant on capability may be consuming power constantly.
Tip: Place all devices on a power strip that can easily be switched off.
Clean your A/C filter monthly. A dirty filter slows down air flow and makes your system use more energy. A clean filter can prevent dust and dirt from building up, which could lead to repairs or system failure.
- Use fans, windows, and dehumidifiers use less energy than air conditioners.
Porous Ducts are often the biggest money waster. Properly maintained ducts can save owners 25% on air conditioning expenses. Focus first on sealing ducts that run through the attic, crawlspace, unheated basement, or garage. Use duct sealant (mastic) or metal-backed (foil) tape to seal the seams and connections of ducts. After sealing the ducts in those spaces, wrap them in insulation to keep them from getting hot in the summer or cold in the winter.
Lowering the thermostat on your water heater to 120 degrees can save you about $7 per month according to the US Department of Energy.
- Consider replacing your water heater is if it more than 10 years old. This could increase the efficiency by 10% more.
- Insulate hot and cold water pipes within five feet of the water heater.
Set your thermostat wisely. When you get home after a long day at work, your instinct may be to crank up the AC and turn your house into an ice kingdom. But, making small changes to the way you use your thermostat can go a very long way in saving energy: each degree of adjustment has an estimated 3-5% impact on your monthly cooling costs.
Low Cost Energy Saving Options
• Wrap your water heater with an insulating blanket, especially if it is older than 10 years.
• Seal your home’s leaks around windows and doors with weather stripping and caulk.
• Keep the AC fan switch set to “auto” and save up to $25 a month versus leaving it set to “on” continuously as many people do.
• Turn off unnecessary lights, and use energy-efficient light bulbs that use less electricity and emit less heat.