Though it may seem the total opposite of an energy-saving device, especially during the sweltering summer months, air conditioners can actually save you lots of energy at homewhile keeping you cool during the summer months.
Given how extreme the temperatures can be during the summer, air conditioners have become something of a necessity for most households. And though it will always consume energy, with a little ingenuity and a handful of habits, air conditioners can be very efficient energy-saving, cooling devices.
How to Save Energy with Air Conditioning
Here are some of the ways you can save energy while utilising your air conditioning unit:
- Increase your temperature. In order to function comfortably in your own home, it really isn't necessary to make the indoors very chilly. The indoor temperature needs to be just low enough so you can move about comfortably but high enough so your air conditioner doesn't strain and use up more energy to keep the indoors cool. Around 78 degrees should be a good compromise between comfort and energy savings.
- Minimise air conditioning at night. At night your activities wind down and the outdoor temperature naturally becomes cooler when the sun goes down, so at this point your air conditioner need not be running overtime. Try turning the air conditioning off when you go to sleep or an hour or two before.
- Have your air conditioning unit serviced. When your air conditioner is working at its best, then it consumes energy efficiently. Make sure to have its filter cleaned regularly and replaced every three months, and have your unit checked annually to make sure it's in good working condition.
- Opt for portable air conditioning units. Try to assess your cooling needs. Do you really need your whole house cooled, or do you just need one or two spaces to be sufficiently cool? If the latter, then it is best to opt for a portable, window unit over a central air cooling system. A portable unit consumes a much smaller amount of energy while ensuring that the important areas of your house are cooled.
- Secure all ducts. Make sure that all your ducts, particularly the ones that pass through non-air conditioned areas of your home are properly insulated to keep the air flowing through as cool as possible.
- Move all obstructions. A lot of energy can be wasted simply by the placement of objects around an air conditioning unit. Check to make sure that no furniture or other objects are placed directly in front of your air conditioning unit as these can obstruct proper air flow and increase energy consumption in the process.
- Use a fan or two. Although fans are completely separate appliances, they can be very useful in helping air conditioners cool your home while saving energy. Fans use only a very small amount of energy but can sufficiently aid the flow of cool air coming from the air conditioner, keeping it from working too hard and using up too much energy.
- Keep the heat down. Additional heat within the home can force the air conditioner to work harder and consequently consume more energy, so try to minimise indoor heat as much as possible. Appliances often produce the most heat indoors, so make sure to turn these off when not in use. Turn off all lights unless necessary, close the blinds, cook as fast as you can during the coolest times of the day and line dry clothes instead of using the dryer.
Air conditioning in Australia is now a must, given how high temperatures can reach.Thus it is of absolute importance to have an air conditioning unit installed and used in the most efficient manner.
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