Summer is here and the days are heating up. And as the weather gets warmer, people automatically turn on their air conditioning. Along with the ongoing cool air comes continued energy use and increased utility bills. Use this midsummer guide to saving energy at home in Denver to help you make sensible choices and reduce your energy use.
Do You Really Need It?
After a couple of hot days, turning on the air conditioner in the morning or after work becomes automatic. But do you really need it? Take one minute to assess the weather outside. It might not be as hot as you think. And is there a pleasant and cool breeze? Take advantage of it by opening the windows to let in the fresh air. Cool the house naturally and refresh the air by letting outdoor air inside. Plus, turning off the air conditioning for awhile will help you save energy.
Units Versus a System
Another consideration is the efficiency of the air conditioning system you have. If you use several old units in various rooms, it could be costing you a bundle to cool the house. And central air systems must be properly maintained to save energy and reduce costs. Check your air conditioners. Are the filter replaced and are they properly charged? Are you using Energy Star efficient models? Anything less means wasting energy and paying increased electric bills.
Let the Sunshine In
Another way to save energy in the summertime is to let the sunshine in instead of using lights. Turn off the lights and enjoy the glow of natural light. The days are longer, which means you can use the sun throughout the day and into the early evening. And turning off the overhead lights and lamps will help reduce your utility costs.
If You Can't Take the Heat, Get Out of the Kitchen
Cooking is a smart way to prepare healthy and affordable meals. But heating up the kitchen to cook often means turning up the air conditioning to cool off your Denver home. Summer is a perfect season to serve fresh and raw meals. Enjoy fruits and vegetables in salads and puddings. Prepare meat ahead of time to use in salads, such as grilled chicken. And take some of the cooking outdoors by having a barbecue.
Put It On the Line
Clothes dryers are a convenience few of us can live without. But they also heat up the house. Instead of drying clothes in the dryer, hang them on a line outside to dry. And that includes all the wet towels used during a summer swim. The fresh scent of the outdoors will fill your clothes and towels while you save energy.
What About Water?
Everybody wants greener grass and to cool off on a hot day. But it takes water to do all these things. Consider investing in a sprinkler system that helps conserve water. Put water in a shallow pool to cool off rather than keeping sprinklers running. Or get a few big water guns and have fun while you cool off - and use less water than a regular sprinkler or popup pool.
New Doors and Windows
Have you checked your doors and windows lately? If they do not have a proper seal or have cracks or spaces, air conditioning is escaping your home. This means you are paying to cool the outdoor world. Updated doors and windows are a solid investment in your home. They increase its value and can dramatically improve energy-efficiency.
Finally, schedule a home energy audit to find out more no- and low-cost ways to save energy in your Denver house. It's quick, easy, and give you valuable info to reduce energy use and lower utility bills for years to come.
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