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As anyone who’s lived in the Metroplex for long knows, having a proper heating and air conditioning service is a must for surviving the summer here. After all, there’s a reason why the Texas Rangers chose to leave their otherwise serviceable home of 26 years for the new Globe Life Field: it’s because their stadium had no roof and thus no way to protect fans from the elements. On those scorching days in Irving, TX when it’s too hot to even play baseball, having a proper heating and air conditioning service to cool down your home can truly be a godsend.
However, there’s one part of having air conditioning in the summer that nobody really enjoys: the bill. Texas eases the pain somewhat by being one of the 10 cheapest states in the nation for electricity, but when the temperatures in the Metroplex push 100 degrees, using any kind of heating and air conditioning service to cool your home is going to take its toll on your electric bill rather quickly. Luckily, there are a few things that you can do to minimize the work your air conditioner has to do and make sure that the time you spent on calling in a proper service doesn’t go to waste!
Seal Your Attic, Windows, and Doors
Your home is constantly in contact with the outside environment. When the air in your home is warmer than that of outside, your house loses heat to the outside; when it’s cooler, it absorbs heat. One of the main ways to prevent heat loss starts at the top of your house, because a properly insulated home is a great way to cut down on lost cold air.
Why? Your home is full of spots where air can escape, which can either lower or raise the temperature in your home accordingly. By adding a layer of insulation to your home, you can trap cold air in your home and keep it from escaping to the outside. When your use of a heating and air conditioning service is meant to keep your home warm, your insulation acts as a protective layer to seal heat in, so it’s pulling double duty. That’s why it’s a good idea to call in an expert to assess insulation and make sure the house has enough.
But even the best insulated home can be undone by your windows and doors. Over time, the seal on windows and doors can allow pockets of air to escape, resulting in your home cooling itself more than necessary. Luckily, there’s a simple test to see if you need to seal them off. If you’re considering a service because your bill is too high, stand outside your closed windows first when the AC is on and see if you notice a jet of cool air. If you do, the problem is a hole that needs sealing!
Get Smarter About Temperature
If you’re away at work for most of the day, there’s not much point in leaving the air conditioner running all day. Not only is this a great way to ensure that you need heating and air conditioning service sooner than you should, but it’s also a great way to waste money if you’re cooling an empty house.
Instead, getting a smart thermostat can allow you to program the air conditioner of your home to automatically shut off a half-hour after you leave for work and kick back on a half-hour before you leave work. That way, your home is the perfect temperature when you actually get home, and you’ll have given it a full eight or nine hours where it wasn’t operating the air conditioner and wasn’t using electricity. That’s an outstanding way to cut back on your electric bill.
The one exception here is if you have pets who will be staying alone during the day. In that case, you’ll want to turn your thermostat slightly higher while you’re away, but not too high. Dogs and cats can tolerate higher temperatures than humans can, but they get used to temperatures over time just like humans do. If your dog is used to 70 degrees, don’t go above 75 when you won’t be home so that you don’t force a big adjustment.
Relocate Your Thermostat
When you call for heating and air conditioning service, you might ask your friendly technician if it’s possible to move your thermostat to a different wall if it’s on a wall that’s directly in the sun. If sunlight is hitting your thermostat, it’s going to think that it’s hotter than it actually is — and that means that your thermostat works harder than it needs in order to keep your home cool. In turn, that forces you to call in a heating and air conditioning service long before it should have been necessary. If your thermostat wasn’t placed on an interior wall near no windows, be sure to ask if it can be moved.
Closing the Blinds
It seems a simple thing, but when you leave the blinds open at your Irving, TX home, you’re actually allowing the heat from the sun to come into whatever room has them open. If you’re trying to heat your house up, opening the blinds is an excellent and free idea. But here in North Texas, people are usually more worried about using a heating and air conditioning service to keep cool, so opening the blinds can work against you more often than not. Basically, if you want a cooler home, close your blinds, and open them up if you want some free heat.
With just a few simple tricks that anyone can do, you can make sure that you keep your home’s air conditioner operating the way it should and keeping the home comfortable all summer long. If something does go wrong and you need heating and air conditioning service, no worries: just call in K&S Heating and Air. We’ll get everything fixed properly!