10 Tips to Keep Cool Without Increasing Your Utility Bill
As Lexington and the rest of Central Kentucky enter the grip of the stifling summer heat, the certified professionals at GreenBox Home Services have some great tips to keep your house cooler reducing the impact on your utility bill. One of the first things we suggest is to lower the thermostat temperature in an effort to make our living spaces more comfortable. We realize the downside of lowering the thermostat temps result in higher bills. Fortunately, we have some tips which can help lower the temperature in your house without always having to crank up the AC.
- Block out the Sun
While the idea of building a solar shield that reflects sunlight back to its source sounds like a good idea when the thermometer gets up into the 90s, that’s a little extreme. Fortunately, you don’t need a community-sized sun shield to reduce the heat in your household. Perhaps the easiest way(s) to reduce the amount of sunlight (and the heat it brings) coming into your house during the summer months is to use blinds and maybe even blackout curtains. According to the Department of Energy, about 76 percent of the sunlight that comes in through the window fixtures is transferred into heat. By using blinds and/or blackout curtains, the light is reflected back towards its source, which exponentially reduces the increased heat in your home caused by incoming sunlight.
- Set Ceiling Fans to Run Counterclockwise
This is a simple but often overlooked tip. When you set your ceiling fan to run clockwise in the winter months, the fan pushes the heated air down. This also works in the opposite direction during the summer months. Switching the direction of the fan from clockwise to counterclockwise, in turn, pushes the heated air up towards the ceiling, keeping the cooler air lower. Keeping the warmer air separate from the cooler air only improves the comfort level of the room, all with the added benefit of keeping those utility bills from skyrocketing.
- Frozen Sheets, Anyone?
Instead of lowering your thermostat to the levels that cause your meter to run on overdrive on a warm night, why not try putting your sheets in the freezer just before bedtime? A cooler bed goes a long way to aiding a night of restful sleep and reduces the worry of increased utility bills. While the effect will probably not last the entire night, it allows you to reach a level of comfort that is conducive to reaching a restful state of sleep, all without having to run the air conditioning unit for the entire night.
- Box Fans for Exhaust
As stated before, box fans do more than simply move around the air, box fans can also be useful in various ways aside from blowing the air around the room. We recommend, placing your box fan in an open window facing outward. By doing this action, it allows the fan to pull the heat out of the room and blow it out of the open window. Instead of using the fan as a tool to move the air around, you’ve now transformed it into an effective exhaust unit that can help remove stifling hot air from your house.
- Use Your Fan To Blow Cold Air Around
Wait, didn’t we just say that fans just move the air around without really affecting the temperature? We sure did, but there’s a simple little trick you can use to have your fan push colder air throughout the house. And no, we don’t mean simply putting in front of air vent. Instead, place a bowl of ice (or ice water) in front of the fan, and presto, you have the makings of a homemade air conditioner. Granted, you will have to add more ice as the contents of the bowl begins to melt, but this is another clever way to increase cooler air to a room without turning up the thermostat.
- Dehumidifiers Do Help
As many of your know, Central Kentucky can get incredibly humid during the summer months, making a hot day into something that’s almost unbearable. Because humidity is simply the amount of water vapor in the air, and an increased amount interferes with your body’s ability to cool itself through sweating, reducing the amount of moisture helps keep the people in the house cooler. While it may not directly impact a room’s temperature, dehumidifiers help the occupants feel more comfortable.
- Turn off Unnecessary Lights
While most people look to the sun when it comes to how hot their house is, artificial lighting increases the temperature as well. The quickest, easiest fix for this is to turn off any unnecessary lights that are not being utilized. Aside from reducing the amount of heat in your house, it will concurrently reduce your utility bills, and that’s something most customers would embrace wholeheartedly.
- Don’t Cook Inside if You Can Help It
Another simple, but often overlooked tip in regards to keeping your house cooler without increasing the use of the air conditioner is to reduce the use of kitchen appliances used for cooking. If you can cook outside on the grill, do it. If you’re using a 400-degree oven when it’s 90 degrees outside, you can bet the internal temperature of your house, especially the kitchen and dining area, will vastly increase. Using outside cooking methods go a long way to reduce soaring internal temperatures. such increase.
- Disconnect Those Unnecessary Gadgets
Most of us charge our mobile phones at night, but did you know those gadget-charging devices can give off heat, as well? The same applies to tech toys. Items such as laptops, tablets, and video game systems all produce heat while they simultaneously draw energy. When you are done using your tech toys for the evening, unplug them. Try to wait to charge your phone before going to bed. Doing so, not only reduces your home’s heat level, but it also helps reduce your utility bills.
- Use Your Exhaust Fans
Those ceiling and hood fans in the bathroom and kitchen are not just there to remove unwanted smells. During the hot summer days, these fans can also be used to pull hot air from a room, reducing the need for increased air conditioning use. Cooler rooms with reduced air conditioning use are the end goal, and by following these tips, you can save a substantial amount of money and have some great strategies when it comes to battling the intense humidity and heat Central Kentucky can throw at us.
If you have tried all of these tips and are still having trouble keeping your house comfortable and find your air conditioner is still working overtime, Schedule an appointment and our licensed pros will be glad to help. We even offer 24/7 emergency services for those disastrous moments that just can’t wait!
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