It’s summer time and consumers are kicking their AC’s in high gear to stay cool from the heat. According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), heating and cooling your home uses more energy and costs more money than any other system in your home - typically making up about 54% of your utility bill. To help keep energy costs down, Better Business Bureau serving Ashland, Medina, Portage, Richland, Summit & Wayne Counties recommends that consumers properly maintain and upgrade their cooling equipment to save money and increase their comfort during the summer months.
Here are some ways to cut back on excessive energy use:
Consider a new energy-efficient system: By selecting a more energy-efficient product when you buy new heating and cooling equipment, you may end up spending less money to heat and cool your home. Ask your contractor about the Energy Guide Label that explains how much energy an appliance uses compared to others.
Perform a home energy assessment: A home energy assessment will look at how efficient your heating and cooling systems are and where your home is wasting energy. This assessment can either be done by a professional or you can choose to do it yourself.
· If choosing a professional, get at least three estimates and check the company out at www.akron.bbb.org
· For performing a home assessment yourself, visit www.energysavers.gov for tips on how to conserve energy.
Other tips for keeping your house cooler in the summer include:
- Check your attic, attic stairway, attached garage walls and basement to ensure that you have proper insulation.
- Get a programmable thermostat, which will allow you to set the thermostat to increase or decrease temperatures as you please.
- Clean or replace filters on furnaces and air conditioners once a month or as recommended.
- Make sure the cooling vents are not blocked by furniture, carpeting, or drapes.
- Keep the window coverings closed during the day to block the sun's heat.
- Consider using an interior fan along with your air conditioner to spread the cooled air through your home without greatly increasing your power use.