As many homeowners can attest, summertime utility costs are nothing to sneeze at – particularly if air conditioning is the only cooling aid your household uses. While AC is undeniably a fast and convenient way to turn your home into a safe haven from extreme heat, running it all season long is liable to be a drain on your finances. Fortunately, staying cool and keeping utility costs manageable don’t have to be mutually exclusive – provided you’re working with the following tips.
Make the Most of Your Ceiling Fans
If you’re looking to bring down summertime utility costs, dependable ceiling fans are an absolute must. Installing high-quality ceiling fans in every area will help ensure the even, efficient circulation of cool air throughout your home. In addition to working in tandem with air conditioning, ceiling fans can also be used to circulate cool air from outdoors. So, if the temps in your area tend to drop overnight, consider opening some windows once the sun goes down and allowing your fans to distribute the naturally cool air all around your residence.
Ceiling fans can also produce downward-flowing cool breezes without the aid of air conditioning. Simply adjust their blades to rotate counterclockwise to take advantage of this feature. Needless to say, this can prove particularly helpful in households that lack AC or are looking to keep AC use to the barest possible minimum.
Regardless of how large your home is or how much ceiling space you have to spare, you should easily be able to find fans that are perfectly suited to your needs. For example, if you’re in the market for a large fan with a lot of blades, consider purchasing a windmill ceiling fan.
Avoid Daytime Oven Use
It’s easy to see why the oven is widely regarded as a modern-day necessity. After all, in the absence of a good oven, preparing certain dishes in a timely manner – or at all – would be utterly impossible. As such, hesitance to limit oven use is perfectly reasonable – particularly if it’s your culinary tool of choice.
However, it’s important to understand that using your oven during daytime hours can contribute to uncomfortable indoor temps throughout the summer months. So, if limiting daytime oven use is an option, consider trying your hand at assorted oven-free recipes. As you’ll find, there are a considerable number of dishes that don’t require the use of an oven. Additionally, if you enjoy outdoor grilling, this may be the perfect opportunity to become better acquainted with barbecuing.
By the same token, you should also make an effort to limit the use of your dryer during daytime hours, as this is another appliance that can contribute to excessive warmth. If you’re not fond of hanging your laundry up to dry, at least wait until the sun goes down to turn on the dryer.
Use Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs
For as long as many of us can remember, the benefits of energy-efficient light bulbs have been well-known. Despite costing a little more than traditional incandescents, energy-efficient CFL and LED bulbs have much longer lifespans and consume far less power. Still, a sizable chunk of the population continues to purchase incandescents because they believe doing so saves them money. However, while it’s true that you’ll save a small amount in the short term, you’ll ultimately spend more in the long run.
In addition to helping you save money, energy-efficient bulbs give off less heat than their incandescent predecessors. So, if every light fixture in your home is currently equipped with traditional bulbs, this may be contributing to uncomfortably warm indoor temps. As such, make a point of replacing any lingering incandescents with energy-efficient alternatives. Not only will this prove conducive to cooler temperatures, but it will also reduce your household’s carbon footprint and facilitate long-term savings.
Depending on where you’re based, cooling your home during the summer can be every bit as financially strenuous as heating it during the winter – possibly even more so. So, if the prospect of unreasonable utility costs have you dreading the return of summertime, now would be a good time to rethink your overreliance on air conditioning. With the help of the tips outlined above, keeping your home consistently cool with minimal AC use may prove much easier than you think.