dog-and-fanIt’s finally here! 80-degrees of gorgeous, non-stop sunshine. Time for beach, bar-b-cues, and all the street fairs and parades you can handle!

How to best enjoy the festivities while keeping your home cool and sparing your electricity bill? The following tips can save you a bundle in cooling costs so you won’t “sweat” the small stuff!

 

1. Close blinds: Midday sun is the strongest of the day and can heat up your home like a furnace. Use blinds and shades to block out as much direct sun as possible. Consider investing in solar blinds if your home receives all-day sun, for further heat-blocking.

 2. Program your thermostat: Adjusting your cooling as-needed is one of the best ways to save costs while staying comfortable when temperatures climb. If you run your cooling system at max even when you aren’t at home, money is draining from your wallet as the hours tick by.

Forget to lower your setting before you leave the house? Consider investing in a programmable thermostat, which can be set to make temperature adjustments for you, in sync with your work schedule or regular comings and goings. Energy savings without a second thought? What’s not to love?

3. Install ceiling fans: Especially at bedtime, a little air circulation goes a long way to keeping you cool. However, running your thermostat all night is a budget-killer. Try installing a ceiling fan in your bedroom for a nice breeze without the high costs.

4. While you’re up there, add an attic fan: Attic fans serve multiple functions, keeping hot air out of your attic as well as drying out moisture that could otherwise lead to mold and leaks down the line. However, on hot summer days, an attic fan’s main job is to keep the upper floors of your home – those most exposed to the heat of the sun – breathable and cool. Attic fans circulate outside breezes in while funneling out stagnant, overheated air. Circulation helps to maintain the long-term structural integrity of your house while keeping your entire home, not just the lower floors, comfortably cool, minus high air conditioning costs.

5. Invest in a dehumidifier: “It’s not the heat, its the humidity.” You may have heard or used this phrase in the past on particularly sweltering days in which the moisture in the air feels more oppressive than the heat itself.

In addition, humidity brings unwanted moisture into your home that “sweats” surfaces, causing unpleasant condensation that can lead to mold and mildew. Mildew is often linked to reduced indoor air quality due to the allergens it creates, which can increase the incidence of asthma in your family members and eventually reduce the overall value of your home.

Many homeowners run their air conditioning harder than necessary and increase their energy costs when all they need to do is reduce the moisture in their home’s air. Avoid the issue altogether with a dehumidifier, which uses two sets of refrigerant-filled coils, one cool and one warm, over which fans blow to remove moisture from the air in its vicinity. One and done.

Keeping your home cool and comfortable this summer without breaking the bank is far from impossible. By using natural cooling techniques and limiting thermostat use based on your time at home, you can keep your cooling costs low while enjoying a relaxing indoor environment.