Ever wonder why July seems like it’s the hottest month of the year? Well, according to The Weather Channel, that’s because it is.
Here in the Midwest, it’s not uncommon for cooling costs alone to be more than $300 while Mother Nature does her best furnace impression.
So, here are seven simple things you can do this weekend to save money the rest of this summer – and every summer from here on out – on keeping your cool. Literally.
Not only will the shade be free, so will the fruit (if you plant a fruit-bearing type).
But not everyone has the space, green thumb, or patience needed for a tree to grow.
That’s where awnings come in.
Adding one to southern or western facing windows can reduce heat gains by as much as 70%!
Prices vary widely depending on the size and style, so shop around. And while there is an upfront investment if you go this route, the costs should be recouped in a few short summers.
Take two minutes just to make sure. And while you’re at it, consider rearranging any furniture that might be blocking airflow. Your thermostat is set to hit a specific number. The fewer vents that are open, the harder your system needs to work to do what you’re asking it to.
And with many electric companies offering attractive rebates or incentives (not to mention the wonder of Amazon), it’s entirely possible to outfit every light and lamp in your home with LED bulbs for next to nothing.
- Clear grass clippings, leaves and other debris away from the unit. For best airflow, nothing should be around your air conditioner within a two-foot radius
- Using a hose, remove the top of the unit and spray from the inside out. This will help loosen or remove items that would otherwise make your unit work harder than it needs to. IMPORTANT: Be sure to shut off power to the unit to avoid potential injury!
- You know the thin mesh covering of your AC unit? That’s called the fin. And you can clean it with something called… a fin comb. Simply running one through the outer covering will help keep the unit clean of clogs and straighten out bent fins. Be gentle when combing though! The fins are delicate and can get bent if caution isn’t used.
How do you know if it is?
Stand directly beneath it and watch the blades spin; they should be moving from the top left to the bottom right, back to the top.
An even easier way: you should be able to feel air moving. If you don’t, the fan is spinning clockwise.
If you need to change the way your fan is spinning, it’s literally as easy as flipping a switch (usually near the light encasement, on the side).
If you have satin or silk sheets, swap them for breathable cotton until the leaves start changing color.
And if you really don’t want to be a hothead, using a buckwheat pillow during the summer can keep you from getting drenched in sweat while you try to sleep.
Instead of running these during the daytime or peak-heat hours, try waiting until dusk or a little later. Doing so will keep the temperature inside your house more comfortable and manageable.
For the truly vigilant, consider handwashing your dishes or using an old-fashioned clothesline.
There we have it: Seven things you can do this weekend (or even tonight) to lower your cooling costs from now on.
And here’s a bonus tip for saving more money every month: Reviewing your home insurance policy to make sure you have the level of coverage you need without paying too much.
Find an agent nearest you or call 800-766-MMIC (6642).