10 Tips To Cut Your Cooling Costs This Season

Posted March 25, 2014

According to the U.S. Department of Energy 40 percent of energy consumed by Chicago area homes is used for heating and cooling. To reduce these costs as much as possible we have put together a few tips on you can use to significantly decrease the amount that you spend to keep your home cool and more comfortable.
  1. Seal Air Leaks - Locate air leaks around windows, doors and outlets by burning a match stick while running the home's fans. Weather-stripping is a simple and affordable fix that can cut up to 15 percent or more off cooling costs.
  2. Switch to CFL or LED Lights - Conventional incandescent bulbs emit a lot of heat. You will keep your home cooler with energy-efficient light bulbs while saving electricity over the long term.
  3. Use Curtains and Blinds - Keep south- and west-facing curtains and blinds closed on hot days and opened during cool evenings.
  4. Adjust Your Laundry Habits - Do your laundry in the evening when it's cooler and wash clothes in cold water to help keep the home cooler. Hang clothes outside to dry on warm days.
  5. Unplug Electronics - TVs, DVD players, and computers that are turned off can still suck power out of outlets. Unplug electronics that are not in use. Use smart strips to make this easier.
  6. Program Your Thermostat - Program the thermostat to turn air conditioning off when the household is away to help save up to 10 percent on your cooling costs.
  7. Move the Thermostat - Make sure that the thermostat is located on an inside wall, away from drafts.
  8. Insulate Attic Access Points - Insulated covers are available for attic doors, hatches and pull-down stairs. Adequate insulation can cut heating and cooling cuts by 10 percent or more.
  9. Ventilate Attics - Ventilation fans help prevent heat from building up in the attic.
  10. Check the Ducts - Sealing and insulating the home's duct distribution system enhances the cooling system's efficiency.
  11. Schedule Maintenance - Arrange for regular maintenance to keep your air-conditioning system operating at peak efficiency.

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