Your Money: Beat the heat, save on the electric bills this summer

How to save money save on the electric bills this summer

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Your most expensive energy bills probably come during the summer months. Luckily, there are some ways to cut costs without buying new, expensive equipment.

Our air conditioner units get the ultimate work out during the summer, but Todd Folse with the Louisiana Housing Corporation says there are small steps we can take to avoid those massive electric bills.

“Those small simple steps [are] what add up to big savings,” Folse says.

One of those simple steps is to turn on a fan and give you’re A/C a break.

“A fan running actually makes the room feel 4 degrees cooler,” Folse explains.

A ceiling fan, a box fan… all work to let the air circulate.

You also want to pay attention to your windows. That natural sunlight lets in a lot of heat.

“Simple lowering your blinds helps prevent that radiant heat from entering your living area,” Folse says.

Drop the shades to drop the temperatures in your house.

Check up on your A/C unit compressor outside, as well.

“A clean unit is an efficient unit,” Folse says.

He says these compressors work to move the heat out of your house. If it’s dirty, things will get hot.

“If there is grass up against it, if there are shrubs around it, it’s not efficiently dissipating that heat,” Folse says.

The same goes for your air vents. Keep them clean and change your filters frequently. A dirty filter means your unit is working much harder and you’re paying more money.

“The beauty of it too is that these are all things that you don’t need a licensed professional to do,” Folse says.

Folse says the ideal temperature to set your thermostat to is 78 degrees. However, he knows that is a bit warmer than most Louisianans would prefer.

He suggests you make one to two-degree adjustments to your thermostat daily, so you become more comfortable in energy-efficient temperatures.

You can also set the thermostat to 78 degrees before you leave the house, so cold air is not blowing while no one is in the room. This temperature should be comfortable for your pets at home.

Weatherstripping to seal the edges of your doors is another inexpensive way to reduce your energy consumption. You can find the sticky strips at a local hardware store and apply them yourself.

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