There is nothing better than coming home after a long, hot summers day to your chilled chamber, feeling the stress of the day ease! On the other hand, there is nothing worse than receiving your electricity bill after three months of enjoying non-stop air conditioning comfort.
In a state where we see temperatures rise well above 40 degrees, we have come to terms with the fact that air conditioning is a necessity. We have put together a few simple things you can do to decrease the shock-factor of your Summer electricity bill and kick that guilty feeling every time you switch on the air-con…
Timing is Everything
There are certain times of the day when it costs more to run your air conditioning as these are the times that most other people are also using theirs. In the Summer months of December, January and February between 3pm and 9.30pm, your electricity usage is approximately three times the regular rate per kilowatt.
If possible, you should limit the use of air conditioning between these times, or any appliances that have a high energy-usage for that matter. Whether this means staying at the office a little later, enjoying dinner outside or finding alternative ways to keep cool, you will no doubt notice the dollar difference at the end of the quarter. The saving may seem small, but over three months it can make a big difference to that end figure on your bill.
Set & Forget
We are all guilty of turning our air conditioners up to arctic in an attempt to cool ourselves quickly and often lose track of time when doing so. All modern air conditioning units are equipped with temperature and timing functions so that you can set and forget!
As a guide, between 22 and 24 degrees is where you should set your air conditioners’ thermostat or no more than eight degrees below the outside temperature. Setting the temperature even one degree cooler can cut costs by up to 10% and if you also set the timer to accommodate your routine, you can avoid unnecessary usage and save money.
Keep it Clean
When is the last time you had your air conditioner cleaned? Not only does a dirty filter effect the quality of the air, it makes your unit work harder and therefore uses more electricity than necessary. Make sure that you have your air conditioner filter cleaned or replaced every year to maintain optimum efficiency throughout the Summer months.
Be Shade Smart
It may seem obvious, but the shadier you can make your home, the naturally cooler it will become, and your unit won’t have to work as hard to reach the desired temperature. For a one-time financial outlay, sun reflective blinds, curtains and shutters will help keep the temperature, your electricity usage and your bill down. Tinted windows, plants, shade sails and insulation are some other ways that you can defend your home from the suns’ harsh rays and minimise how hard your air conditioner has to work.
Close & Conceal
Most modern homes have air-conditioners in multiple rooms of the house. If possible, limit your household to using only one at any given time and make sure that the room/s that you are utilisng are well concealed to keep the cold air in. Ensure that all the doors and windows of the area are closed when running the air conditioning, including blocking any gaps under doors or other discrete places it may escape from.
If you are cooling an open area such as a living, dining and kitchen space, you can look into temporary structures to act as a barricade for the rooms without doors. Some ideas include a room divider, movable furniture such as a bookshelf, folding screens and even curtains will help keep the cool in and ensure you are getting the most out of your system.
Other Tips & Tricks
- Install ceiling fans as an additional alternative for when air conditioning might not be quite needed.
- Turn off heat-emitting devices including clothes dryers, ovens and computers
- Upgrade your system if it is considerably old – newer models are cleaner and more energy efficient
- Install solar panels – you will save a significant amount on your electricity bill and it’s the only way you can use the sun to help you stay cool!
If you’d like some energy efficiency tips or information on air conditioning, please don’t hesitate to give us a call!