As summer rolls in, many are turning to their air conditioning system to keep a cool and comfortable indoor environment. This, however, may also mean higher energy consumption and expensive energy bills.
To help lower your energy bills this summer, here are some ways to use your cooling system more efficiently:
Set the right temperature
It is recommended that you set your air conditioner thermostat between 24 and 26 degrees Celsius for living areas during summer. Setting a lower-than-needed temperature on your thermostat does not necessarily make your air conditioner cool faster, but it definitely makes it work harder and therefore cost more. In fact, every degree lower can increase running costs by as much as 10 percent.
Clean the air filters
One simple way to ensure that your air conditioner continues to perform efficiently is by cleaning the air filters regularly. An air filter that is dirty and clogged with dust makes the system work harder, which means more power is used and this in turn raises the energy costs. How often filters should be cleaned depends on a few factors including frequency of use, but generally filters should be cleaned or replaced at least once every few months.
Service your system regularly
Getting your air conditioning system serviced regularly will ensure that your unit continues to perform as effectively as it should. A professional technician will also be able to check that all ducting is free of air leaks, and alert you to any damages, avoiding bigger and costlier breakdowns.
Use fans as well
Instead of setting a low temperature on the thermostat, consider using fans with your air conditioners to circulate cool air more evenly around the room. Due to the wind chill effect, fans can make the space feel cooler than it actually is. This also allows you to raise the thermostat by as much as four degrees without feeling much discomfort, and in doing so, save money.
Check the windows and doors
If you are using evaporative cooling systems, keep your doors and windows open large enough to allow the air to flow outside. Insufficient openings will actually reduce the unit’s cooling effectiveness, and may overwork the fan. However, if you are using other air conditioning systems such as split systems, ensure that all windows and doors are closed.
Keep the heat out
Do not underestimate the heat that comes into your home through uncovered windows during hot days. Use curtains, shades, shutters or other exterior coverings on your windows to keep the summer heat out. This helps the house to stay cooler than outside, which in turn means your air conditioner will not need to work as hard.
Don’t forget the outdoor unit
If the outdoor unit (or compressor unit) is fully exposed to the sun during the day, try to shade it with an awning or something similar. However, make sure it is not blocked by plants or covered with dust and debris, because restricted air circulation around the unit will not only increase power consumption but may also lead to permanent damage.
Turn it off when not using
Finally, do not forget to turn your air conditioner off when you are not using it. According to research by Finder.com.au, almost 1 in 4 Australian households leave their air conditioning running for up to an hour even when they are not home. It is actually cheaper to turn the system off when you are out and on again when you come back.
Keep these tips in mind to help lower your energy bills this summer. If you are looking to replace your old cooling system or are in search for a better, more efficient unit, please speak to our team and we are more than happy to assist you. Call 1300 301 665 or get a free quote within 24 hours.