Electric bills are a big part of any homeowner’s monthly budget, and if you’re like most homeowners, the single biggest user of electricity in your home is likely your air conditioner. The exact amount of energy you use on a yearly basis varies somewhat depending on seasonal weather, but as a rule, the air conditioner uses more power than the refrigerator, the second-biggest user of electricity. The efficiency of other appliances also play a role, such as dryers and dishwashers (the latter of which can also affect the efficiency/energy consumption of your water heater).
You can get a sense of how much you’re spending on air conditioning by comparing electric bills from different months. Take a look at your bill from July or August, then the bill from a month like March in which you likely didn’t use your air conditioner: the difference in usage can be largely chalked up to air conditioning. Multiply that number by the number of months you typically use your air conditioner, and you have an estimate of your annual cost — as much as a thousand dollars or more.
The good news is that your air conditioner is also a great opportunity for you to reduce your electricity consumption. One simple way is to set your thermostat somewhat higher during the cooling season; a good ceiling fan can allow you to set your thermostat higher without sacrificing comfort.
Another option, particularly if you have an older system, is to upgrade to a new air conditioner. A more efficient system can save you hundreds of dollars annually and pay for itself in just a few years. To really maximize your savings, pair that system upgrade with insulation and duct sealing, both of which can enable you to upgrade to a smaller unit and save money without losing cooling effectiveness.
Give us a call at (413) 200-4203 to learn more.
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