Americans are increasingly aware of the effects that their actions have on the environment and are looking to make upgrades to their home that will boost its eco-friendliness. Since air conditioners account for almost half of all home energy use during the hot summer months, choosing the right AC unit can significant lessen your home’s impact on the environment–and, as a pleasant side effect, can dramatically lower your monthly energy bill at the same time. Moreover, an eco-friendly AC unit will cool your home just as well as any other unit, meaning that you don’t need to sacrifice comfort to do your part in protecting the planet. With that in mind, here are four tips to keep in mind as you look to make your home and AC system a little greener.
Opt for Units That Are Energy Star Labeled with a High SEER Rating
Replacing your old air conditioner with a new and more energy efficient unit is the quickest way to boost your home’s eco-friendliness. The Energy Star label provides helpful guidance for finding a green AC unit, as units with this label must meet certain government standards for overall energy efficiency. In addition, find out the SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating for any unit that you are considering. While the federal minimum SEER rate is 13, the most efficient air conditioners on the market carry a rating of 25.
Pick the Correct Size System for Your Home
Bigger is always better, right? Not when it comes to air conditioners. An AC unit that is too big for your home will waste energy by running inefficiently and is more likely to wear out faster that a properly-sized unit. Too small isn’t any better; an inadequately-sized system will overwork itself trying to cool your home, leading to increased energy usage. Seek professional guidance if you need help determining the correct size for your home.
Install Programmable Thermostats
Whether you are upgrading to a new and more energy efficient AC unit or simply want to make your current air conditioner more environmentally friendly, a programmable thermostat can make a significant difference in your home’s energy usage. These devices allow you to turn your air conditioner off while you are away from home while programming it to automatically begin cooling in time for your return, thus dramatically cutting down on your energy usage without sacrificing comfort. Best of all, programmable thermostats are both affordable and easy to install.
Schedule Regular Maintenance
One of the most effective ways to boost the energy efficiency of your existing AC unit or to keep your new eco-friendly AC system in top shape is to schedule regular maintenance. At a minimum, you should have a professional HVAC contractor inspect and service your AC unit at least once a year.
Want to learn more about how you can use your AC unit to make your home more environmentally friendly? The team at Service First Air Conditioning & Heating can help. Just give us a call to schedule your appointment for a free estimate.