Lowering Electric Bill Houston
As the heat turns up in Houston, so do our electric bills. With higher temperatures your air conditioning system works harder to try and keep up. The simplest steps to lowering your electric bills involve getting your system to work smarter, not harder.
- Change those filters!
The #1 easiest, most cost effective thing you can do is regularly replace your air filters with the type designed for your system. I am sure you are reading this thinking of course I do that. But approximately 60% of homeowners do not replace their filters and 30% don’t replace them correctly. Correct replacement can yields an average savings of 5%, significant for a seemly insignificant air filter.
Correct replacement involves the following:
- Replacing the filter according to your recommended schedule, not guessing if they look dirty enough. Often clean looking filters are very dirty. Air filters collect dirt inside long before they do on the outside.
- Using the correct filter is essential. The wrong filter will act like a filthy dirty filter sucking in dirt and debris while causing you system to struggle. Most Houston homes are designed to operate with is a flat non-pleated filter. Often this filter is blue at the home improvement store. Increasing your filtration by using a pleated filter, washable filter, or advanced filtration system can cause significant damage to your air conditioning and heating system if system design modifications are not made. Before increasing the filtration in your Houston home ask your technician if your HVAC system can handle the added work that it will provide.
- Don’t just look at it.
Active maintenance is essential to reducing electric and repair bills. Inspecting your home’s system points out areas of concern but fails to provide active maintenance. The idea is that the homeowner acts on the concerns and performs the maintenance required to keep their air conditioning system running correctly. Louisiana State University conducted a study on how regular cleaning, adjustment, and tuning affect the electrical efficiency of a HVAC system. They found that average residential air conditioning and heating system saved 421.6 kwH after regular active maintenance was performed. That is 5,059.2 kwH a year! That is a savings of $60+ a month for the average Houston system. Looking for a way to make active maintenance simple? Check out our Comfort Club.
- Go on autopilot.
With your air conditioning and heating system using 80%+ of you Houston home’s electric bill, it makes sense that the closer your indoor temperature is to your outdoor temperature the less electricity it is going to suck up. Even with the quickly rising cost of electricity, I am not going to start keeping my home at 80 degrees; however, I spend at least 8 hours not at home every day. By setting my thermostat to 80 while I am at work, I am able to significantly reduce my electric bills. It is also a good idea to reduce cooling or heating power when you are on a vacation or business trip. The easiest way to organize all this monkey motion is to have an air conditioning and heating professional install a programmable set back thermostat. This new brain will automatically adjust your homes temperatures based on when you go to work and are expected to return. Many mid-range thermostats also offer a simple vacation button for when you are out of town. At the press of this button your air conditioning system understands you won’t be home and adjusts accordingly. When you return, another press assures the system you have returned and to resume your normal schedule.
By working smarter and not harder you can make sure that every energy dollar is invested in your home comfort and eliminate any wasteful spending.
Aardvark A/C & Heating