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  1. #1
    Deal GURU
    Join Date
    Mar 2007


    General Cooling Tips

    Of course, the best way to reduce your air conditioning bills is to
    reduce heat in your home, especially during summer months. The tips
    below can help reduce the workload on your air conditioning solution:

    * Set the temperature a little higher. Most people can be
    comfortable with a setting of 78-80 degrees Fahrenheit, plus you'll
    save 6 percent to 8 percent of your cooling costs for each degree
    above 78.
    * When you leave home, turn off the air conditioning or set the
    thermostat up a few degrees.
    * Be sure your filters are clean. They should be checked monthly.
    (Remember to check filters that may be in a unit located in the
    attic.) Coils of an outdoor unit should be free of debris and not
    blocked by plants, shrubs, etc. Be sure the return air grill inside
    your house is not blocked by furniture or other items. (If you have
    more than one return, check them all.) A return needs a free flow of
    air for the air conditioning to operate most efficiently.
    * Keep doors and windows closed when air conditioning is on. Turn
    off kitchen or bathroom exhaust fans when your air conditioning is
    * Caulk and weather-strip leaky windows and doors.
    * Use a ceiling fan or portable fan to supplement your air
    conditioning. A fan can make you feel three to four degrees cooler
    (and only costs a half-cent per hour to operate) so you can set your
    thermostat a few degrees higher and save on cooling costs. Use in
    occupied rooms since fans cool people, not rooms. As a safety
    precaution, turn off ceiling fans when you leave your home.
    * For central air conditioning systems, keep the fan switch on
    your thermostat in the "auto" position when cooling. This gives you
    better cooling and humidity control. Having the fan switch "on"
    continuously could cost $15 extra a month on your electric bill.
    * Use shades or drapes to block the hot sun from heating up your
    home. Use awnings, trees and shrubs to shade your home.
    * Use your microwave or countertop appliances for cooking instead
    of the oven or stove.
    * If you suspect your air conditioning system is not cooling
    properly, have it checked promptly. A unit that is having operational
    problems can cause extremely high bills.
    * If your air conditioning equipment is older and less efficient,
    compensate by being extra careful about temperature settings, hours of
    operation and filter condition.
    * Make sure your home is properly insulated. In existing homes,
    wall insulation may be too expensive to install, so concentrate on
    attic and floor insulation.

    General Heating Tips

    * Keep your thermostat at the lowest comfortable temperature ? 68
    to 70 degrees is recommended. Every degree above 70 costs an
    additional 3 percent to 5 percent. (Example: Keeping your home at 75
    degrees could cost up to 28 percent more on the heating portion of
    your bill than keeping it at 70.)

    * During winter months, Progress Energy recommends setting the
    temperature at 70 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 60 to 65
    degrees Fahrenheit at night.

    * By setting your thermostat back 10 degrees at night (8-10
    hours), you'll save 10 percent to 20 percent in heating costs. The
    lowered thermostat setting saves energy dollars by reducing the length
    of time the heating system operates throughout the night.

    * Lower your thermostat at night or when you leave the house.

    * Keep doors and windows closed when heat is on.

    * If you have a fireplace and aren't using it, make sure the flue
    is closed. Consider glass doors to help prevent heat loss when your
    heating system is on.

    * Using a portable heater for "spot" heating lets you lower the
    temperature in the rest of the house. However, using it too much can
    be very costly! One 1500-watt resistance heater operating 24 hours a
    day for a month would cost more than $80.

    * If you have a heat pump, adjust your thermostat in small

    increments to avoid the operation of the supplemental heat strip in
    your system. Energy consumption is much higher when the heat strip is
    in use. A steady setting on your heat pump thermostat produces
    constant comfort and minimizes the use of the less efficient
    resistance heat strip.

    * Don't block the outside unit. Never stack anything against the
    heat pump or drape anything over it.

    * Hose down the outside unit from time to time to remove dust,
    dirt, lint, leaves and grass clippings.

    * Be sure the filters in your heating system are clean. Dirty
    filters will increase heating costs.

    * Caulk and weather-strip any leaky windows and doors.

    * Open drapes and shades on the sunny side of your house to help
    warm the home during the day. Close drapes and shades at night to cut
    heat loss.

    * If the indoor unit seems to have excess water around it, check
    the condensate drain and pan for blockage.

    * Make sure drapes and furniture are not blocking air registers or

    * Keep the fan on your central heating unit on "auto" position.
    Leaving the fan on "on" can add $15 a month to your heating costs.

    * Don't close off more than 10 percent of the unused rooms in your
    home. Your heap pump works best with free airflow throughout the house.
    All of my posts were transferred from
    the budget101 Discussion list

  2. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to BiggerPiggyBank For This Useful Post:

  3. #2
    Smart Budgeter
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Gardening Zone 7 in USA


    I replace my filters for my two heat pumps (I live in a 2 story house) every month.

    I also replaced a lot of light bulbs with CFLs.

    I've noticed my elecric bill went down after I switched light bulbs.

  4. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Needlepoint142 For This Useful Post:

  5. #3
    What's a Budget?
    Join Date
    Dec 2008


    We bought some window film for our window's this summer and it really made a difference in how cool the rooms were.


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  7. #4
    What's a Budget?
    Join Date
    Dec 2008


    we use cieling fans all year long and we put them on reverse in the winter so the hot air goes down and not stay by the cieling. (hope that makes sense)


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