Is it wise to leave your A/C on the whole day? Or should you consider turning it off at certain parts of the day?
It seems to make a lot of sense to turn it off when you leave the house for work or an errand that you may have that takes you outside. You will be saving both energy and money at the same time. However, you will also be sacrificing comfort. For some people, that is a big thing. Going home to a hot and stuffy house after a tiring day is just not appealing at all. Or when it is winter, the coldness in your house makes coming home a less than pleasant event. You want the temperature to be just right so you will feel really good when you get home.
So how can you balance the need to save on the A/c energy consumption with your personal comfort?
Should you leave it on or turn it off?
Obviously, we cannot be reckless about wasting energy because that does not just affect your own finances. It also affects the whole planet. Global climate change is real and unnecessary use of energy is never a good thing. Coal and fossil fuel are burned and that contributes to global warming.
That being said, your A/C should not be left on the whole day – but it should not be turned off either. In fact, experts say that turning your unit on and off might consume more energy. Instead of completely turning it off, you only have to increase the thermostat while there is nobody at home. When you increase the thermostat, it lowers the energy consumption of the cooling unit because it does not have to work as hard as it has to.
When you do this, you are not only helping the environment, you are also keeping your comfort level up. It is a win-win situation.
Tips to keep your energy bill low while staying comfortable
To make this effort less of a hassle, you can implement the following tips at home.
Install a programmable thermostat
If your A/C unit does not have it yet, you need to have a programmable thermostat installed. This will allow you to automatically adjust the temperature in your home. You can set it so the thermostat will rise when you leave the house and will go down before you get home. This will ensure that your home is at a comfortable temperature the moment you step inside. Just make sure that the thermostat you will buy is compatible with the specific model of your A/C unit.
Use a ceiling fan
Another thing that you can do is to use a ceiling fan. This will help keep the temperature in a room cool without making the cooling unit work hard. The moving air is also pleasant to the skin. You may want to have a ceiling fan in areas in your house where you usually hang out or entertain guests. That way, even if there are many people, it will not feel too hot because of the air circulating because of the fan.
Obviously, you will not do this when you are out of the house. This is best done at night when the weather outside is cooler. Open the windows before you go to bed and let the air from the outside circulate in your home. You can turn off the A/C when you do this. The draft will also keep your house from smelling too stuffy. If it is cool enough, you can even keep the air conditioner off the whole night and just open the windows in your bedroom – as long as you are sure that it is safe to do so.
Plant trees and bushes
Finally, you can help block the heat coming from the sun by planting trees or bushes on the south and west side of the house. This will filter the heat that should have penetrated your home. It will lower the warmth inside.
Consider all of these tips to help you feel cooler at home without consuming too much energy.