Summer is here, which means as the temperature rises, so do your energy bills. Here in Gainesville, we’re not strangers to the high electricity bills that seem to creep up on us during the hot summer months. Many homeowners are left feeling helpless about how to lower their energy bills, but as Gainesville’s air-conditioning energy experts, we have a few tips that can help!
Our owner, Chuck Larsen, is a state-certified energy rater through RESNET, which means he has been certified to look for ways to improve energy efficiency in your home. There are many things you can do to save energy in your home, but in this post, we want to focus on the practical things homeowners can do today to help save energy (and money!).
Bubble Wrap Your Single-Glazed Windows
Believe it or not, bubble wrap is an effective insulation for single-glazed windows! If your home has single-pane windows with poor insulation, adding a layer of bubble wrap can insulate them. The air bubbles within the bubble wrap mimic the effect of adding another pane of glass to a window, but is much cheaper! You’ll sacrifice the view, but your energy bills will thank you!
Add Some Greenery
Plants always add a nice feeling to the interior rooms in your home, but did you know they can also cool your home and even dispell humidity? Plants release water vapor through their leaves, which creates a cooling effect through a process called “transpiration”. Not only that, but there are a host of plants that can actually help remove some moisture from the air. Popular plants that can help with humidity are air plants, succulents, and ferns.
There is a lot of research to back up the benefits of live plants in your home, but we think the effect they have on your electric bill will be your favorite!
Cook “Cool” Meals
A surprising way to lower your summer energy bills is to cook “cool” meals. These are meals that don’t require the oven to cool, and take very little time on the stove. Heating the oven heats the house, which causes the air conditioner to work harder than it needs to. Sandwiches, salads, and wraps make great options in the summer. Choosing cooler meals will not only will you save money on your energy bills, but your family will enjoy the unique flavors of summer recipes.
Another way to cook while saving energy in the summer is to use an Instant Pot or microwave. Pressure cooking saves up to 70% more energy compared to boiling, steaming, oven cooking, or slow cooking. A microwave is the most energy-efficient appliance in the kitchen, so use it often in the summer to avoid high energy bills. You can also take advantage of the summer weather and cook outdoors to keep the heat outside!
Replace Dirty Air Filters
We all know the importance of air filters for indoor air quality, but did you know that replacing your filter also helps your unit run more efficiently? The simple act of replacing your air conditioning filter can reduce your air conditioner’s energy consumption by 5 -15%! If you ask us, it’s the easiest thing any homeowner can do to help reduce their energy bills.
Stay Tuned for Part II for More Tips from Gainesville’s Energy-Saving Experts!
In our next post, we will give a few more tips to help save you money and energy this summer. As Gainesville’s energy-saving experts, we can help you determine if your home needs more help. With every air conditioning repair or installation, we perform a whole-house inspection to help you determine where you could be wasting money. If you’re in Gainesville, FL or the surrounding area, give us a call to help you save even more on your energy bill!