There’s bound to be a heat wave or two this summer, but that doesn’t mean you can’t stay cool despite the climbing temperatures. These five tips will help you increase the energy efficiency of your Pittsburgh home and decrease your utility bill.
Invest in a Smart Thermostat
Smart thermostats help you keep your home comfortable by learning your habits. Once they understand when you typically prefer cooler temperatures, they’ll use that information to adjust the temperature depending on the day and time. Many systems also incorporate motion sensors. If you enter the room, they’ll turn down the temperature, then raise it a few degrees when you leave. Smart thermostats also take in account weather changes. If the smart thermostat detects a temperature drop, it won’t run as often, while a sudden warm up will trigger more frequent cooling cycles.
Take Advantage of Fans
Energy-efficient fans generate a cooling breeze that can make hot days more tolerable. Installing ceiling fans in every room will improve air flow through your home and also permit more efficient circulation of cooled air from your air-conditioning system. If you’re considering buying a few ceiling fans, look for products that feature the Energy Star designation. Fans that feature the designation are 60 percent more efficient than conventional fan/light combinations, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
Throw a Little Shade
Your air-conditioner won’t have to work quite as hard if you keep your windows covered during the hottest part of the day. Close draperies, shutters and shades early in the morning before the sun warms the interior of your home.
Are you concerned that you’ll forget to close the curtains or lower the blinds before you leave for work? Smart blinds and shades offer the perfect solution. The motorized window treatments can be controlled by a remote control or an app, allowing you to program closing/opening times or even change the position of the blinds or shades when you’re away from home.
Fix Air Leaks
Insufficient insulation or small gaps around windows or in walls can let in hot air and allow cooled air to escape. A home air leak test, conducted by your contractor, can determine if leaks are a problem. If leaks are detected, your remodeling contractor can offer solutions that will improve the comfort of your home.
Wait Until Dark
Nearly all appliances generate heat, which can make the interior of your home uncomfortably warm on summer days. Your house will stay cooler if you wait until the sun goes down to use the dishwasher, washer or dryer.
Meal preparation is one of the chief culprits in rising indoor temperatures. During the hottest days of the year, create simple meals on your grill. If you don’t have a dedicated grilling area, consider creating a spot on your patio or deck. In addition to installing a high-end gas grill with attached burner, add a small refrigerator and bar area with seating to ensure that there’s plenty of room for the entire family.
Is your home unbearably hot during the summer? You may benefit from a home remodel aimed at increasing the energy efficiency of your property. Master Remodelers can help you find leaks and incorporate smart technology into the design of your living spaces. Contact us to learn how we can help you stay cool.
U.S. Department of Energy: Spring and Summer Energy-Saving Tips
U.S. Department of Energy: Ceiling Fans
C/Net: Best Smart Home Thermostats for 2018
Mother Earth Living: How to Keep Your House Cool Without Air-Conditioning