Blog

Oct
30
Reduce Your Air Conditioning Costs

Whether you are making the conscious decision to go green for the good of mother Earth or to just keep a little extra green in your pocket, cutting down on the use of electricity in your household is always a progressive idea. Living in Florida,our biggest energy saver that we all notice and welcome with open windows, is the weather change. We aren't blessed with the ability to keep our windows open all year round and stay comfortable in our homes, but we are quickly approaching cooler weather that allows us to do so for a period of time. Living in Florida all my life, I know how wonderful it is to receive the first month's bill without running the air conditioning and seeing that it cuts your bill down by almost half! Of course we're not able to do this all year round with our scorching heat in the summer, and let's be honest here, fall and spring time running even slightly close to summer is not comfortable with the humidity we face. I am going to show you some other energy efficient ways to go green and save some green.

Looking at the fact that air conditioning is one of, if not the largest factor in our energy usage, I would like to make this the first priority on our green list. Knowing that air conditioning is key for survival down here, there are ways to ensure you are not overworking this very important appliance. Looking at the newer models, most of them now have the energy star or energy efficient stickers. These stickers allow you to be aware that they use less energy while still serving their purpose in the household. Having an appliance that is energy efficient is certainly a step in the money saving direction.

Looking specifically at heating and cooling, conduct a home energy assessment. Call your electric provider and find out if your home has leaks that need to be addressed, if the home was poorly insulated, or if they can recommend a professional who can assist you as well. Ensuring that your home is holding temperature without making your air conditioner work overtime is a key factor in conserving energy.

Energy Assessment Tips for Heating and Cooling:

Easy Checks That Make a Difference

• Check that you have adequate insulation in your attic, exterior walls, ceilings, floors, and crawl spaces
• Check for air leaks around your doors, windows, ceilings, walls, light and plumbing fixtures, switches, and electrical outlets
• Check for open fireplace dampers
• Ensure your heating and cooling systems are properly maintained

Send Older Appliances Out to Pasture

Appliances are certainly something you want to ensure aren't wasting your money and energy. Older appliances are surely just throwing your money down the drain with out-dated technology that expends more energy to complete a task. Replacing all of your appliances will certainly drain your wallet dry if they are not needed right away, but you can find deals when they are on sale, or if someone has decided that they would rather have stainless steel instead of white kitchen appliances and get them at an extremely marked down price. It all depends on where you are with your home transformation to an energy efficient home.

We are in such a technological state that chances are you have energy efficient appliances, but some are still draining power due to what I like to call, “operator error”. For example: Take a close look at your water heater. Chances are it is an energy efficient appliance, but the setting on it when installed is probably bringing your water to temperatures your skin will never come close to feeling. The average person will not use water exceeding 125 degrees for showering or washing your clothes. There is no need to have water being heated to scalding temperatures if it will ever be used. By understanding what your settings are as well as proper maintenance you will find your appliances operate properly and without costing you extra.

Don't Forget About Windows

Living in the Sunshine State we have to take a look how our windows impact our electric bill. Of course we think to put up blinds or shades and also add curtains. This sounds like a great idea in theory, until you are sitting in your home on a gorgeous sunny day feeling like a vampire. There are ways to keep your home cool without having to give up the most popular perk in our area. Making sure that there are no leaks in the windows is important and also looking into a treatment to insure you are properly insulated can leave you with sunshine you don't have to worry about paying extra for. These treatments are relatively inexpensive and usually consist of a sun controlled or other reflective film. If you really want to get energy efficient and have the money to do so, there are also double paned windows that are very attractive and also a wonderful upgrade to add to any Florida home. These tips will allow you to remain comfortable during our trying summer heat without breaking the bank!

It's All About the Little Things

When considering less expensive ways to impact your energy bill, pay particular attention to the little things draining electricity in your home. Light bulb technology has come a long way since Thomas Edison was around. Switching to the inexpensive CFL or LED bulbs will use only a quarter of the energy of a traditional incandescent bulb and have a life expectancy 10 times longer.

Of course we are also going to talk about the little power culprits in your home such as computers, phone chargers, toasters; anything that is plugged in but rarely ever on and used. By simply adding power strips to plug these appliances into, or simply unplugging them after use will help cut down on electricity as well. You may not think these are draining electricity because the phone is not charging or the computer is not on, but understand there is still electricity powering through the line. How do you think the little light stays on that tells you your charger or computer is plugged in?

Take the First Step

It is a great first step to make the decision to have an energy efficient household and in the end your wallet will thank you as well as mother Earth. I have only just begun to touch base on tips to ensure an energy efficient home, but by consulting your local electricity provider they will have more in depth knowledge and recommendations for testing your home and how to treat your energy expulsion. They will be happy to discuss this topic with you and provide you with written checklist. They can even recommend someone who will come to your home and show you where the insulation is insufficient or that your dryer vent is clogged and needs to be cleared so it only takes a 30 minute cycle rather than 2 full hour long cycles. There is much to be learned on this lightly spoken of subject, but it mostly comes down to maintenance, preparation, and a little diligence on what you're not using and what appliances are sucking the electricity right from your home.

If you have any questions, or would like to get more information about energy saving features to watch for when buying a Sarasota home, please don't hesitate to contact us at (941) 284-4474 or Toll free (941) 404-4737. One of our qualified agents will gladly get back to you.


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 Keller Williams Island Life Real Estate         The Coffey Group Fine Homes International                   Longboat Key Island Office               Coffey & Divald Property Management

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