Avoiding AC usage

How to Reduce Air Conditioner Use


If you use air conditioning, it is easy to just set your thermostat to a comfortable temperature and let the system do the rest. But the cost of air conditioning is increasing, and there are other ways to keep your home cool and to use less electricity for air conditioning.

  • Plant trees on the sunny side of your home.

  • Install awnings and trellises on the sunny side of your home.

  • Install a reflective roof on your home. If you have a mobile home, or a site-built home with a flat roof, coat your roof with a reflective white elastomeric roof coating.

  • Insulate your attic. This saves energy in the winter, too.

  • Install reflective shades or window films on the sunniest windows in your home.

  • Duct your dryer to the outdoors. Line-dry your clothes if possible.

  • Don’t use your oven on hot days.

  • Install compact fluorescent lamps in the fixtures you use the most. Old-fashioned incandescent lamps produce 10% light and 90% heat.

  • Wrap your water heater, to slow the heat that flows out through its shell.

  • If you plan to buy new windows, learn to read the window-rating label. For the sunny sides of your home, buy windows with a low Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC).

  • Power ventilate your home with cool night air whenever outdoor air is cooler than indoor air.

  • Use room fans in occupied rooms to create a wind-chill effect.

Both Your Home Cooling Energy Guide and The Homeowners Handbook to Energy Efficiency have extensive information about maintaining comfort and reducing air-conditioning costs.