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Summer Energy Myths That Can Drive Up Your Costs

Myths and Facts

Summer energy myths can quickly drive up energy bills and may actually hinder comfort and system efficiency. Do any of the following myths affect your Illinois or Indiana home?

  • Turning the A/C Off When You Leave Home Is the Best Way to Lower Cooling Costs. It’s easy to do, but turning off the A/C system to save energy when you leave home just makes the system work longer and harder when you return to a hot house. The best solution to save energy while away from home (and during sleeping hours) is to use a programmable thermostat. It can be set 7-10 degrees higher when the house is empty, and programmed to return to a comfortable temperature before you expect to arrive home.
  • Very Low Thermostat Settings Cool a Home Faster. Turning the thermostat way down does not make the A/C cool faster in most cases. Even a high-efficiency A/C with a variable-speed blower and compressor won’t cool a home of 85 degrees to 75 degrees any faster if the thermostat is set on 65. Moreover, setting the thermostat too low wastes energy if it’s forgotten.
  • Closing Off Air Vents Saves Energy. This summer energy myth merely creates airflow restrictions, system wear and operational problems with your A/C. Closing vents also creates disruptive duct noise from airflow forcing its way through small openings in “closed” vents, and the open vents are noisier due to the added airflow. Consider a zoning system for conditioning rooms as needed.
  • Ceiling Fans Cool a Home. Ceiling fans do not affect the temperature of a room. Instead, ceiling fans provide a wind-chill effect for occupants, which removes heat and moisture from the body more quickly. Running a ceiling fan in an empty room wastes energy.
  • Running the A/C Is the Only Way to Stay Cool. Using window coverings to block sunlight into a room reduces heat gain, which lowers the need for A/C while keeping the room comfortable. Ceiling fans are excellent devices for feeling cooler without running the A/C 24/7. If you are upgrading or installing a new cooling system, remember that heat pumps provide excellent home cooling, too, and you’ll enjoy a dual-fuel heating system (paired heat pump and furnace).

If you have any questions about summer energy myths, please contact Meyer’s for the answers.