a large living room with a large white couch and a dining table

Bob's Beat

Summer: A Sizzling Season of… Savings? - Tips to Lower Your A/C-Related Energy Costs

Badger Bob's - JAugust Blog Header

If you see your electric bill rising like the thermometer this summer, don’t worry. You’re not alone. During the sweltering summer months, Floridians are pumping up their HVAC systems to keep their homes cool. Unfortunately, with excess A/C usage, comfort comes at a cost – right?

Not necessarily

Yes, your HVAC unit accounts for a significant chunk of your energy bill – especially during the stifling heat of June, July, August and even September here in the Sunshine State. That’s just the way it is if you want to keep cool. Of course, we don’t expect you to endure the heat of Florida without air conditioning, but there are some simple things you can do around the house to reduce your electricity consumption here and there – which will lower your bill.

Throw shade

You can go back to virtually any blog we’ve posted and you’ll find us mentioning how important it is to change your A/C filter. While the ordinary filters in central HVAC systems help remove dust, dander and particles from the air, these basic filters do not eliminate microscopic threats that can harm your health. Filters only go so far. If you want the job done fully, a “whole-home” purifier is the way to go.

Lose the leaks

When there are air duct leaks, it means that your system is spouting cooled or heated air into your attic or other unwanted location, and therefore requires more energy to properly cool your home. In fact, leaks in your ductwork can reduce the efficiency of your HVAC system by as much as 40%! There are ways to look for yourself to see if there’s a leak, but we recommend you hire a professional for a more thorough check. If you think your ducts have leaks, we can help. You can learn more at https://badgerbobs.com/duct-sealing/.

It’s ok to vent

Some believe that closing vents can reduce energy consumption by preventing the need to cool a particular room, but that’s actually a myth. Closing vents will affect the proper circulation your home needs and raise your energy costs. So, it puts more money back in your pocket by keeping these vents open.

Get with the program

Programmable thermostats are the new standard for efficiency, with an EPA-estimated savings of $180 per year when properly used. Set the thermostat to a cool default temperature when it knows you’re home and program it to automatically switch to a warmer temperature when you know the house will be empty, like during work and school hours. For maximum savings, FPL recommends you set your air conditioner (A/C) to 78° F in the spring. Try 82° F or warmer when you’re away, and set your thermostat fan to “auto.”

I’m a fan of your work

Using ceiling fans and electric fans costs less than blasting the air conditioning. To make the most of this energy-efficient technology, strategically place fans around the house to help blow cool air around. Keep in mind, you might think you’re cooling a room by leaving the fans on when you leave, but in reality it’s just wasting energy. Turn them off if you’re in a different part of the house or just not home.

Our doors are always open

It goes without saying that if the A/C is on you should shut the windows and close the exterior doors. For those interior doors, however, leave them open to help the system keep the temperature balanced throughout the home.

Of course, the filter

It wouldn’t be a Badger Bob’s blog post without us mentioning the importance of changing your A/C filter. Remember to clean or replace your HVAC filter monthly during summer. When filters are dirty, the cooling system has to work hard to push air through the ducts, which increases energy costs and increases the risk of malfunction.

The Badger Bottom Line

Not gonna lie, it’s hot out there. Your A/C needs to run – a lot – to keep you and your family comfortable through the summer. Without taking the steps we provided above, this extra run time will hit your wallet in higher energy bills. We also recommend routine maintenance to make your HVAC is working efficiently, saving you money over time. If you’d like to learn more or to schedule an appointment for a Badger Bob’s maintenance visit, simply call 941.225.2775 or go to https://badgerbobs.com/schedule-now/.