As temperatures continue to rise, staying cool this summer means an increase on your utility bills. While the rising heat impacts financial and environmental factors, there are habits you and your Residents can apply to your daily summer living to reduce those financial and environmental impacts. By following these simple summer energy-saving tips, you and your Residents can keep the temperature, and your budget, well within your comfort zone.
1. Maintain Your Air Conditioners.
Neglecting basic AC maintenance results in poor performance and excessive energy use. At times, specialists may be required to inspect the coils, fins, evaporative cooler and heat pump. Schedule this service for all of your units before the summer is in full swing for greater efficiency all season. On a more regular basis, you do not need to be a qualified HVAC expert to perform a basic check on your air conditioner and ensure that it is functioning properly. Routinely vacuuming the air vents to remove any dust accumulation will help keep your AC running efficiently. Be sure to check that no furniture or other things are restricting the airflow as well.
Replacing your air filter is one of the simplest and most effective ways to ensure that your air conditioner operates smoothly and efficiently. Filters that are clogged or unclean restrict circulation and diminish your air conditioner's ability to absorb heat. Replacing a filthy filter with a clean one can reduce your air conditioner's energy consumption by up to 15%. If your air conditioner is used frequently, is exposed to a lot of dust, or you have fur-shedding dogs, your filters may need to be changed more frequently. Make sure Residents know the exact size and brand of filter they need to buy, or supply them with the right ones.
Lastly, keep lighting and televisions away from your thermostat; the thermostat will detect the heat generated by these appliances, causing your air conditioner to run longer than necessary.
2. Put Your Window Treatments To Work.
During the day, be sure to close your shades or drapes to keep the sun's greenhouse impact at bay. The heat of the sun is concentrated on the southern and western walls; keeping drapes or shades for these windows closed during the day will make a significant difference in keeping those rooms cooler. Try blackout curtains for even more light and head reduction! North-facing windows, however, let in a lot of natural light, with low glare and nearly no unwanted heat gain in the summer. These window treatments can be left open to allow natural light into your home without overheating it. You will be surprised by how effective this simple tip is for keeping your home cooler while reducing your bills.
- Pair Your AC With An Energy-Efficient Dehumidifier.
A dehumidifier is an excellent partner for your air conditioner in hot, humid areas and a terrific way to reduce humidity levels in your home. A dehumidifier can help you save money on electricity as your air conditioner won't have to work as hard. When your home's air is overly humid, your air conditioner has to do the double duty of cooling the air while also eliminating moisture. An AC system that works too hard may break down more frequently, necessitating extensive and costly repairs.
- Avoid The Oven.
Cooking with a conventional oven can elevate temperatures in your home, forcing your A/C to work harder. By opting to cook with a microwave, slow cooker or outdoor grill, your kitchen can stay as cool as possible during the warmest parts of the year. Air fryers, which are countertop convection ovens, are another great alternative when you need to bake something and don’t want to heat up the whole house.
5. If You Aren't Using It, Unplug It.
Whether it’s your computer or your toaster, all electronics generate heat. Even when they are switched off! Simply being plugged in generates a small amount of heat in the wiring of appliances. To keep things cool, unplug any electronics you’re not using. It’s not much per device, but all the electronics in your home collectively can make a few degrees difference.
6. Implement RUBS (Ratio Utility Billing System) If Possible.
At its core, energy conservation is the practice of using less energy to lower costs and reduce environmental impact. This can mean using less electricity, gas, or any other form of energy that you get from your utility and pay for. With finite energy resources available on our planet, actively conserving energy when possible is beneficial individually and to our larger energy systems. And this is achievable with the ratio utility billing system which helps to monitor the usage of utilities in your properties. The principle of conservation can be easily conveyed with the Ratio Utility billing system. Conservation means more savings of energy and more money.
At Livable, we believe that what’s good for the planet is good for your wallet. Save money and natural resources this summer!
To learn more about how Ratio Utility billing promotes conservation while saving you money on master-billed utilities, book a call with one of our experts.