Think back to the middle of winter, when the cold mornings and cloudy days had us all yearning for the sunshine of summer. Well, the summer has finally arrived and while we can get back to the outdoors, we’ll probably still want to enjoy the indoors - even after the last year of the pandemic! While last year may have felt out of your control, there is one thing you can take control of this summer — your energy bills!
Does every summer feel like you’re relying heavily on your air conditioning system, your television, washer and dryer, as well as all of your other electronic devices — all of which can raise your energy costs at the end of the month? Here are a few energy savings tips that can reduce your energy costs not just this summer, but all year round for years and years to come, especially when you make energy saving changes along with installing solar.
Set Smart(er) Thermostat Settings
Cooling accounts for 16% of all energy consumption among homes in America. Getting smart about your thermostat settings is the first line of defense against high cooling costs! According to the US Department of Energy, you can save as much as 10% a year on annual cooling costs by simply turning your thermostat up 7°-10°F for 8 hours a day. This can be done by manually changing your thermostat each day when you leave your home, or if you have a programmable thermostat, you can program it to a warmer setting for the times you know you will be out of the house every week.
Of course, there are “smart” options when it comes to a thermostat as well, which gives you even more control over your home comfort and energy savings. Smart thermostats take the guesswork (and the learning curve) out of adjusting your thermostat settings, by connecting to your smartphone and automatically adjusting your temperature settings based on your behavior for even greater energy savings. Over the course of a year, a smart thermostat can save an estimated $900 on your heating and cooling costs — which is far above the cost of installing a smart thermostat!
Put Energy Intensive Appliances in Check
Take a look around your house and note all your power-hungry appliances that could be helping to rack up your energy bills. Looking to upgrade these appliances to more energy efficient models is one way to help lower your energy consumption for years to come but you could also look to see if there are any setting adjustments that could be made like running an eco cycle on your dishwasher or laundry machine. Also, make sure to change your filters on your air conditioning unit and get your HVAC system checked to make sure it is running as efficiently as possible and draining unnecessary energy costs. Final tip, remember fans cool people and not rooms so turn off those ceiling and room fans when you leave a room.
Keep the Heat Out
One simple solution to help keep the heat out of your home is to make sure your windows coverings are preventing heat gain during the day. However, if you feel like you're in a losing battle with your home on keeping the heat out while your air conditioner is running, you may want to look at air sealing the cracks in your home and weatherstripping around your doors and windows.
Solar Installation Saves in More Ways Than One
If you are already familiar with the way solar energy works, you know that installing solar panels on your roof or property can greatly reduce or even eliminate your energy costs. However, solar is a much more dynamic home energy saver than just converting the sun into renewable electricity!
Solar Panels Can Actually Keep Your Roof (and your home) Cooler
Your Texas or Colorado home heats up in the summertime, from the roof down. As the sun beats down on your shingles, the air in your attic begins to heat up, and that heat will seek out the cooler air of your living space. This temperature increase forces your air conditioner to work harder to reach the desired temperature, increasing your cooling costs.
Installing solar panels on your roof can deflect some of the heat from the sun, leaving your roof an estimated 5ºF cooler than if it were left exposed to the sunlight. This will reduce your cooling costs, on top of the renewable solar energy you are already using!
Solar Battery Backup
Combining a battery backup system with your solar panels, like Tesla Powerwall, will keep your home running on renewable solar energy all night and day, even during an outage. With a solar battery backup, your solar panels charge up a system of batteries. This ensures that no solar energy goes to waste, especially during times of peak sunlight but low in-home electricity demand. And with a system designed to operate outside of the greater electrical grid, you will be able to keep your lights on during an outage, blackout, or brownout all from the power of the sun!
Start Saving with Solar Today!
If you are dreading your summer cooling costs and are looking for a lasting solution to reducing your energy bills all year round, ask CAM Solar about how much you can save on your electric bills with solar panels. CAM Solar installs custom-designed solar panel systems throughout Denver, Colorado Springs, Aurora, and Pueblo, CO, as well as San Antonio, Austin, Laredo, and the Rio Grande Valley in TX. We also help you take advantage of all the solar incentives and rebates available to maximize your savings when you go solar.