As we’re heading into the dog days of summer here in the Pacific Northwest, now is the time when heating and cooling costs are at its peak for many families. According to the Department of Energy, heating and cooling accounts for more than half of the energy use in the typical American home, making it the largest energy expense for most homeowners.
Keeping your home cool this summer should not cost an arm or a leg. Your Tacoma energy specialists at Ranger Heating & Cooling are here to share strategies to help reduce the cost of your energy bill this summer.
1) Learn to operate your thermostat efficiently
Keep your home warmer than normal while you’re away on summer travels, and set it to around 78 degrees or whatever is most comfortable when you’re at home. 78 degrees is commonly considered to be a good point for an air conditioner to run at its optimal performance level. Setting your A/C to be colder than desired doesn’t actually cool down your home any quicker and could result in higher cooling expenses.
We recommend installing a programmable thermostat in your home to control temperatures according to your daily schedule. Pre-programmed settings can automatically adjust the temperature while you’re at away or sleeping, and cool down the temperature when you’re at home and awake. Our smart Trane thermostats can even be remotely controlled by a smart phone, tablet, or PC. By only heating or cooling your home during necessary times in the day, you can save a pretty penny in energy costs.
2) Protect your outdoor air conditioning unit from dirt and debris
Your outdoor A/C unit will run most efficiently if it is clean and clear of debris. Make sure the area around your outdoor A/C unit is free of foliage or any outside objects that can restrict airflow. In one of our past blog posts, we wrote about how to properly prepare your air conditioner for summer. To learn more, click here.
3) Replace your air filter
Dirty air filters are one of the main reasons for inefficient A/C performance. It’s important to regularly replace A/C filters every month during the summer. Dirty or clogged air filters block normal airflow causing the unit to work harder, thus increasing operating costs. Not to mention, dirty air filters can result in lower indoor air quality and affect the health of your family. According to the Department of Energy, replacing a dirt air filter with a clean one can lower your A/C’s energy consumption by up to 15 percent.
4) Consider replacing old HVAC systems
One possible factor that can lead to high energy bills over the summer is outdated and inefficient central A/C systems. If your unit is more than 10 years old, it may be time to replace it with a more energy-efficient model. Our ENERGY STAR®certified Trane A/C systems can cut down cooling costs by up to 30 percent and reduce your carbon footprint. The energy savings over the years will make up for the upfront cost of purchasing a new A/C system.
5) Schedule regular maintenance with HVAC professionals
Just like a car, your HVAC system requires regularly scheduled tune-ups with an experienced and well-trained HVAC technician to ensure its running efficiently. A HVAC technician will properly clean, tune, and maintain the A/C unit, and identify any issues before they turn into expensive repairs.
We offer RangerGuard, exclusive maintenance plans to support the health of your HVAC system. Contact us if you have any questions regarding HVAC services or energy savings. Our dedicated team at Ranger Heating & Cooling are available to help. If you’re interested in installing a new heating and cooling system, we also offer complimentary in-home energy consultations to help you determine what HVAC system would be the best fit for your family.