Every homeowner knows about the struggle to balance the cost of electricity with an acceptable level of comfort in your home. With the cost of energy increasing each year, the battle for a cool and comfortable home during the summer months continues to grow more challenging. However, following a few simple tips, you can reduce the cost to cool your home and enjoy added comfort from the summer heat.
Understanding Off VS. Unplugged
Have you heard the term vampire power? The name might conger up an image of a tremendous fanged beast, and that is not too far from the truth. But the fangs on this beast are the two prongs on the plugs of many of your home’s electrical devices. Vampire power refers to the small but constant trickle of power that items consume when turned off but still plugged into an outlet. You might think that just a tiny amount of electricity is being sapped by each device. But when you count the number in your home, it can quickly reach several dozen items and account for up to 20% of your monthly electric bill. Unplug devices to stop this 20% waste on your monthly bill.
Get With The Program
Installing a programmable thermostat is a simple way to begin saving money throughout the year. Consider how many hours you are asleep or away from home in a 24 hour period. For many people, that number is more than 12 hours, and for some, it is 18 or more. A programmable thermostat allows you to adjust the temperature a few degrees when no one is home or when everyone is asleep. This temperature change is automatically managed by the program you create on the thermostat, so there are no added chores for you. But the savings are estimated to be about 20% of your heating and cooling bills, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Free Solar Heating
In the winter months, you are all about free warmth from the sun. So you open curtains and blinds to let the sun warm your house and reduce your heating cost. But in the summer months, you need to be equally aware of this free solar heating. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that medium-weight curtains with white plastic lining can eliminate 33% of the heat that transfers into your home through your home’s windows. Closed blinds offer about the same amount of heat reduction. But sadly, only 25% of the houses with blinds or curtains are being used to block out the heat of the sun during the summer months. So close your blinds or curtains to reduce your electric bill in the summer months significantly.
Ceiling fans do not alter the temperature of a room, but they do move the cooler air around to help you feel more comfortable. In an Energy Department study, it was determined that a room with a ceiling fan could have the thermostat set four degrees higher than a room without a ceiling fan and still offer the same level of comfort. And fans with the Energy Star label move 20% more air than less efficient models. But be sure the fan is rotating counterclockwise to push air downward. That circulation will help balance the warmer air temperature at the ceiling with the cooler air near the floor.
To learn more about reducing your electric bill this summer, call (501) 426-5624. The licensed pros at Money Electric can offer many tips and install more energy-efficient devices like ceiling fans and other appliances to help you save money and energy this summer.