Depending on your climate, between 20-50% of your annual energy consumption goes to cooling your house and accounts for 5-15% of your carbon footprint.
Now is the time to make some adjustments to cut back on your AC usage, saving you money and decreasing your carbon output. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Keeping ourselves cool is the obvious first goal in home cooling. But what may not be obvious is that cooling our bodies is relatively easy and doesn’t usually require cooling the entire space around you.
- Install ceiling fans.
Or if you already have them, dust those blades and check they are set to circulate in the right direction to cool the air (counter-clockwise in the summer). It’s a widely known fact that using a ceiling fan can help you feel up to 5 degrees cooler. If you have a room that can’t seem to stay cool, an investment in a small box or oscillating fan may be a worthwhile addition to personal cooling
- Check for drafts.
For a small price, you can apply weather-stripping, foam sealant or silicone caulking to all windows and doors to help seal the cold air in. Don’t forget to check the doggy door, as well as insulate any electric outlets or switches, crawl spaces or attic doors. (For a cheaper temporary solution, you can also keep a rolled towel at the bottom of the door, but the weather stripping is truly worth the investment.)
- Install a solar attic fan.
A solar attic fan decreases the hot air trapped in the space, making the home easier to cool and can decrease your home cooling bill by up to 10% a year.
- Increase insulation.
Double-paned windows, well-insulated walls and increasing the insulation in your attic all help to save energy by keeping the cool air indoors. Consider recycled blue jean or paper insulation