Should You Keep Your AC Running All Day?

air conditionersMost of us are unsure whether it’s more cost-effective to keep ac running all day or only have it on when we are home. Saving money on your electric bill each month adds up quickly. It can make a big difference financially at the end of the year, which is why it’s incredibly beneficial to use your AC as efficiently as possible.

Efficiency benefits you financially, but it also helps the planet. The more energy you use, the more coal and other fossil fuels are used, ultimately contributing to global climate change. So to save money and reduce negative impacts on the environment, you’ll want to find the proper routine for turning your AC system on and off. Below, we’ll discuss the most efficient cadence, why, and some other tips for reducing your energy usage.

What Is Most Efficient & Why?

It may seem like a waste of time and energy to turn your AC on and off every time you leave the house, but it is the most efficient method. According to Jennifer Thorne Amann, MES, buildings program director for the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), “Air-conditioning systems run most efficiently when they’re running at full speed.”

Because of how AC units are designed, running them all day at less than full speed requires more energy overall. Your AC unit is also better at dehumidifying your space when working at full blast. So while this might mean your unit makes more noise cooling your home when you arrive, it will pay off in a lower energy bill and a reduced negative impact on the environment.

More Ways to Save

1. Leave Your Thermostat at a Higher Temperature

If you have central air or a window unit with a thermostat, you can reduce your energy usage by setting the thermostat to a higher temperature. Typical air conditioners use 3-5% less energy for every degree you raise the thermostat. For optimal energy efficiency, leave your thermostat at 78 degrees or higher while you’re out.

2. Pick Up a Programmable Thermostat

Whether you turn the temp up or turn the AC off completely when you’re leaving the house, a programmable thermostat can automatically bring the temperature down to your desired level before you get home. However, you’ll need to select a model that is compatible with your cooling and heating systems. For example, some programmable thermostats don’t work with heat pumps, which will become an issue in the winter. The AC experts at Air Design can guide you in selecting and installing the right thermostat for your home.

3. Add a ceiling fan

Fans don’t cause the temperature in a room to drop, but they do simulate cold air. With air from the fan blowing, it makes you feel cooler and more comfortable without having to turn down the thermostat.

Routine Maintenance Is Key

The best way to ensure your AC is working as cost-effectively as possible is with routine maintenance. Even if you start and stop your AC at the perfect times and keep it at the ideal temperature while you’re gone, it is likely not working very efficiently if it hasn’t been inspected in a year or more.

To ensure your AC unit is working at peak efficiency, speak to one of the friendly AC experts at Air Design today.

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