Are You Spending Too Much on Energy Bills?
When you reduce the need for air conditioning, you’ll see your energy bills fall, since cooling your home accounts for approximately half your electric bill during the summer. That amount could be even more, depending on your Fairfax area home’s ability to resist heat transfer. Heat always seeks cold and in the summer, it moves into your home from the warm outside.
These tips will help you cut down on overall energy consumption without sacrificing your comfort.
- Check the insulation level in the attic. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends that you have from 16 to 20 inches for the best thermal protection from the heat that builds in the attic. Insulation is relatively inexpensive, and depending on the type you choose, is easy to install. It’s a durable solution to high cooling costs.
- Look around your home’s exterior and interior for leaks around the window frames, the foundation, exterior doors, and places where pipes and wires enter your home. Most can be sealed with caulk, weatherstripping or expanding foam, depending on the type and size of air leak you’re sealing.
- Address your windows to reduce the need for air conditioning. Unless yours are high efficiency, they will let in a lot of heat when the sun hits them. Upgrading the windows to Energy Star certified and/or thermal windows is a significant investment, but it will pay off in lower year-round conditioning bills. Window treatments such as thermal drapes will help, as long as they hang close to the glass and thoroughly cover the tops and bottoms of the windows.
- Use floor or ceiling fans in rooms you occupy frequently. While the fans don’t lower the temperature, they do help you feel cooler since the air has a cooling effect as it strikes your body. Moving air evaporates body moisture faster, helping you cool.
- Change your lighting to LED or CFL bulbs. These produce much less heat than old incandescent bulbs and use less electricity.
- Limit heat-producing activities, such as cooking, laundry and using the dishwasher, to early morning and in the evenings to take a burden off your cooling system.
For more information about how to reduce the need for air conditioning in your home, please contact us at HVAC & Plumbing Unlimited Heating & Air Conditioning. We provide exceptional HVAC services for Loudoun, Fairfax and Prince William counties.
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