Did you know that in Fort Lauderdale your central air conditioning system accounts for almost 70% of your monthly electrical bill? That can add up to some serious cash quickly. When you hear the hum of your AC fan running you can almost also hear the sucking sound coming from your bank account.
As one of Fort Lauderdale’s leading plumbing and air conditioning service firms, Paradise Plumbing & Air Conditioning would like to share a few tips to help you drop the cost of running your AC in our incredibly hot and humid summers.
There are several ways to tackle lowering energy costs for your AC but we are going to focus on the AC system itself, and ways to minimize the source of the heat (the sun) in your home.
Optimizing Your Air Conditioning System
Air conditioners in Fort Lauderdale get significantly more use than AC units in other parts of the country.
- You take your car to the garage for a scheduled tune up to prevent an unexpected breakdown which you know will cost significantly more money and time than the tune up. The same theory applies to your AC. Have your system serviced every year by a professional AC technician before the hot weather arrives to ensure it’s in optimal condition. A 2.5 ton unit consumes about 3500 watts per hour. Make sure you are getting 3500 watts worth of cooling.
Take the Heat Off Your Home
If you can minimize the amount of solar energy entering your home the AC doesn’t have to work as hard or as long.
- Your roof is the principal "point of entry" for heat from the sun. Older, conventional shingles will transfer 75% of the heat it receives from the sun into the attic. New roofing materials can turn that percentage upside down and are capable of reflecting 90% of the sun’s heat. Assuming you won’t be re-roofing this year you can minimize the absorption of solar energy by adding more insulation and ensuring that your roof is adequately ventilated. The duct work carrying your cool air runs through the attic and the lower you can get the ambient temperature (attics can hit 1400) the cooler the air will be when it’s delivered to your interior.
- Landscaping can play a large role in keeping your home cool. Trees strategically placed on East and West facing walls will keep the home in shade as well as add a nice look to the home. Speaking of shade, your AC unit will perform better if it is in the shade.
- Windows with reflective window coverings, or even wire mesh screens will deflect heat, or in the case of the screens absorb the heat before it enters the interior.
- If you don’t have ceiling fans get them. They are inexpensive and can make you feel 3 to 6 degrees cooler meaning you can bump the thermostat up a degree or two.
That’s a start. The tips listed here all require an investment but they are also all long term solutions that will yield a surprisingly high return on investment.
If you have any questions on energy saving steps you can take for your AC, give us a call today and we will be delighted to assist you.