Getting through summer in comfort means having your air conditioner pumping its way through the day and night.
Cool conditions are great, but when the energy bill arrives, do you find yourself sweating?
While you also can’t avoid scrambling to switch on the air conditioners to beat the heat, you can maximize the energy efficiency to keep your power bills in check.
In this article, we speak with Rod Marchant of Peninsula Air Conditioning based in Sydney’s Northern Beaches, who shares with us some ways you can go about saving energy – including saving money on your air conditioning bills too.
Make Use of New Technology
Synthetic refrigerants are in the process of being phased out. This is good news for the environment and your pocket.
Hydrocarbon refrigerants, which are used in new energy-efficient units, can result in savings of up to 38% on energy.
Combined with inverter technology, you can achieve savings of up to 60%. Bonus? The materials are a lot kinder on the environment.
Clean the Filters
Cleaning filters that are clogged and dirty will mean the unit doesn’t have to work as hard to cool the ambient temperature.
In summer, there tends to be more dust and pollen in the air, so the filters may need frequent cleaning. It’s a simple job. Simply remove the filters from the unit, hose them down, and replace them when dry.
This will save you money on your energy bill, and extend the life of the unit.
Check on the Location of Your Thermostat
This is not something many people think of, but keeping the thermostat far enough from heat-emitting appliances is important.
A thermostat is heat sensitive. When it’s placed near a light or television set, it picks up more heat signals. This makes it think that the room’s temperature is warmer than it really is. The AC unit will try to cool the room more than it should.
When it works harder, it uses more energy. Avoid appliances that emit heat being anywhere near the thermostat.
Turn Your Aircon Up
Did you know that with every degree you set the temperature below 25.5, energy consumption is increased? It can be by as much as eight percent.
To achieve the comfort you want, and save money, instead, set your unit to blast-cool the room for a few minutes and then turn up the temp.
Close All the Doors
This is a very simple easy air conditioning efficiency tip, but it can save you some big money.
When the doors of rooms are closed, the aircon will calculate its workload to cool the room that it is in.
When doors are left open, it will have to work harder to cool the rest of the home.
Invest in a Ceiling Fan
A fan will help the air conditioner cool a room as it lets the cold air circulate. This means that the AC won’t have to work as hard to reach the far ends of the room.
The result is that the air-conditioner can cool much quicker and uses less energy doing so.
Install Window Blinds
Window blinds will block the sun and cool a room and are a more affordable option than a double glazed window.
By closing the blinds or the curtains, the room will be cooler to start with. It means the air-conditioning unit will need less output to cool the room further.
Another option is applying a window film to tint the glass darker. This prevents the direct sun from entering the room and pushing up the temperature.
Buy the Correct Sized Air Conditioning Unit
When you invest in an aircon, ensure it appropriately-sized for the area of the room it is cooling.
An underpowered aircon will have to work non-stop at full power to lower the temperature of a room. Conversely, a unit that is too powerful for the room it’s in will waste energy.
Consult a professional air-conditioning technician to assess the needs of the room you want to cool.
Invest in a Smart Thermostat
The majority of air conditioning units these days have an inbuilt smart thermostat.
It allows the unit to make decisions on how much energy to use and adjust according to the time of day, humidity, or the number of people in the room.
Older units can be retrofitted with a smart thermostat to maximize efficiency and save you money.
Turn the Aircon Off When Not Needed
This is the easiest and most effective way to boost your air conditioner’s energy efficiency. Simply remember to turn off the aircon when you don’t really need it.
In offices, this is a common issue. Workers rush out at the end of the day and forget to switch off the aircon.
A simple solution is to put the units on a timer or put up signs reminding staff to switch off the units before they leave the office.