July 1, 2024 |

Hot Tips for Cool Summer Energy Savings

In summer, energy costs for cooling often rise along with the thermometer. Peak demand charges also become a significant issue in many homes and farm operations. The following energy-saving guidelines will help keep your energy budget from slipping into the red as summer heats up.

Cooling systems

Although it's essential for comfort, air conditioning is a substantial summertime operating cost for most facilities. Use these cost-saving tips to help cool off your energy bills:

  • Verify all maintenance has been performed on your air conditioning equipment and change filters regularly according to manufacturer's guidelines.
  • Raise thermostat settings by a few degrees during times of day when you are away from the home.
  • Check and update HVAC control settings on your home or building automation system to account for the changing season and your schedule.
  • Use window treatments to prevent unwanted solar heat gain from entering your home.
  • Install window film, solar screens, or awnings on south- and west-facing windows to provide cooling shade on hot summer afternoons.

If your air conditioning system is 10 years old or older, or in regular need of repair, consider installing a new, energy-efficient system. Work with a qualified HVAC professional to properly size the system for your needs.

Reducing demand

Demand charges can make up a significant portion of your energy bills during the hot summer months. The following strategies will help you level off your peak demand:

  • Operate large appliances and equipment during off-peak hours in the evening or early morning.
  • Close window coverings and blinds to keep summer sun and heat at bay.
  • Consider setting your thermostat at 78 degrees from noon to approximately 8 p.m.

For more ideas on how you can save energy and reduce your operating costs during the summer and all year long, see Low-Cost and No-Cost Energy Efficiency Measures from ENERGY STAR®.