In the middle of a scorching Queensland heat wave, the last thing you want is an air conditioner that isn’t doing its job. You need to keep your home cool and comfortable, but without wasting energy and spending a small fortune on cooling costs. Here are a few tips for making it through the hot weather for less money.
Your first step should be to block the heat before it enters through windows. Using lined curtains and shades can lower your home’s temperature dramatically. Even if you don’t have light-blocking shades, blinds, or curtains, keeping unlined curtains drawn during the daytime will help. Also, be sure to close off any areas of your home that you don’t use often, so your unit has a smaller space to cool. Can you use one bedroom, instead of two, until the heat wave passes?
They’re often overlooked, but refrigerators and other appliances put out heat. If possible, locate your unit away from any heat-generating appliances. This will prevent inaccurate temperature readings, and keep your air conditioner from working harder than necessary.
Using Your Air Conditioner Efficiently
One of the most important things you can do for economical air conditioning is to properly maintain your unit. This will not only extend its life, which saves you money, but also reduce energy waste and expense. Although you need a professional for major maintenance and repair jobs, anyone can wash and change a filter. It’s simple, easy, and makes an immediate improvement in air output and overall efficiency. You can also remove dust and dirt from the unit’s external air intake vents.
Does your air conditioner have a timer? If, so take advantage of this by setting it to turn off when you’ll be away from home. If you can sleep comfortably without running it at night, set the timer to power off when you go to bed. Many people use a fan to keep air circulating and reduce humidity while they sleep.
Finally, resist the temptation to adjust the unit’s temperature to its lowest setting. You might think this will cool your home faster, but selecting a temperature of 24 to 27°C will cool you down just as quickly as setting it to 17°.
Yes, heat waves are uncomfortable, and sometimes even dangerous. With a little planning, though, you can keep cool and save money at the same time.