21 Florida Summer Time Energy-Saving Tips

If you live in Florida, you know how hot it can get in the summer time. There are many things you can do to save energy during those hot summer months. Following these tips will save you money and energy, while still allowing you to keep cool.

  1. Set AC Thermostat as High as Possible

You should set your AC thermostat as high as you can stand it. If you are home, try to set the thermostat to 78 degrees, and when you are not at home, try to set the thermostat to 85 degrees. Today’s thermostats are digital and allow for you to set timers for when you would like it to be cooler or warmer in your home based on the time of day. Some energy companies offer a credit towards your monthly bill if you allow them to remotely control your unit to help spread out the use of energy during peak times.

  1. Keep Air Vents Clear from Objects

You should keep all of the air vents that are inside of your home clear from all furniture and any other objects. If the vents are covered up, you are not getting the maximum amount of airflow. Make it a point to open the air vents and clear them from any items that may have fallen in over time. This is a very useful tip for households with small children, as children often drop small objects into air vents. Additionally, if there are air vents in an area of the home that you do not frequent, try closing them so the air will redirect to the other areas of the home.

  1. AC Units Tuned Up

Homeowners often overlook tune-ups. Just like it is necessary to have scheduled maintenance on your vehicle, it is equally important that you have your AC unit tuned up every year to keep it running at its best.

  1. Replace Air Filters

One of the best things that you can do for your AC unit is to check the air filter every month. If you notice that the air filters are dirty, you need to replace them immediately. If your air filters are clean, your AC unit is going to run more efficiently. Try to set get in the habit of checking your AC filter when you pay your rent or mortgage. This way, you ensure that you check and/or replace your filter every month. It is also important to use the correct size filter. A filter that is too loose or too big will not adequately block any dust or antigens from escaping and circulating through your air supply.

  1. Indoor Appliances

When you run the appliances in your home, it creates heat, thus raising the temperature of your home and causing your air conditioner to run longer and harder. When you have to run the appliances, try to run them in the evening. If at all possible, try to completely stay away from using your oven on the hotter summer days and opt for grilling outdoors instead.

  1. Water Heater Setting

Setting your water heater to 120 degrees can help in cutting down your energy costs. Being that Florida has such high temperatures, the pipes are often warm and do not need much additional heat.

  1. Blinds and Drapes

Try keeping the blinds and drapes on your windows closed during the day. Invest in good quality blinds and drapes; they specialize in blocking out light. Blocking out the heat will help reduce the amount of energy that is needed to cool down the home. Furthermore, opening the blinds and drapes during the evening can help keep your home cool.

  1. Use Fans

Using fans in your home is a super easy and cost-efficient way to keep your home cooler. To best utilize this trick, try putting a fan in each room of the home. Or at the very least, put them in the rooms where you spend most of the warmer part of the day..

  1. Washer and Dryer

In addition to operating your washer and dryer in the evening, washing your clothes in cold water can also help reduce your energy bill. Another tip, clean the lint filter after each use of your dryer, so the air can flow freely and not force the machine to work extra. Today’s washers and dryers have energy efficient settings that can also help reduce your energy costs.

  1. Power Strips

If an appliance or electronic is not being used, unplug it (of course this is not for your refrigerator). Appliances and electronics heat up your home even when they are not being used. An easy way to unplug televisions, DVD players, and computers is by using a power strip. Turn off the entire strip when they are not being used.

  1. Pool Filtration

If you have a pool, try reducing your pool filtration time by 30-minute increments each day. As long as your pool water is looking clean, you can keep reducing the time of the filtration. You’d be surprised at how much you may be over filtering your pool. Having your pool in a screened enclosure will also help keep unwanted debris from falling into the pool. If building a screened lanai is too costly, try a pool cover that can be placed over the pool when not in use.

  1. Vacuuming Registers

Registers or air vent grills often get overlooked in the home, especially if they are located on the ceiling. By vacuuming or dusting the registers or air vent grills, you are going to remove dust buildup, and you are making sure that you are getting all of the air flow you should be getting from your AC unit.

  1. Lighting

Remember when your parents would yell at you to turn off the lights when you were done with them? Turns out, this tip can save you some money and keep you cool. Another great add on to this advice is to replace your standard bulbs with energy efficient light bulbs to cut back on your energy use.

  1. Showers

Baths require a lot of hot water, whereas showers tend to be cooler and shorter, and thus the more energy efficient way to wash. Cool and short showers in the summer can also help you to cool off. Another tip would be to turn off the shower when lathering or washing your hair.

  1. Sealing Cracks

The best way to ensure that hot air doesn’t leak into your home is to frequently search for cracks, both on the interior and exterior of the home. When you seal all cracks and openings, you prevent the hot air from leaking inside your home, thus keeping the temperature regulated. Cracks and openings can easily be sealed with an inexpensive caulking or weather stripping.

  1. ENERGY STAR Products

As noted in previous tips, ENERGY STAR lamps, light fixtures, appliances, and windows will save you money and energy. Using an ENERGY STAR programmable thermostat can save you close to 3% in energy savings.

  1. Attic Insulation

Attic insulation can settle with time. It’s best to check the status of your insulation levels. Additionally, if your attic insulation rating is R-19 or less, you should consider insulating your attic to at least a rating of R-30. The higher the insulation rating, the more protection you will receive for your home.

  1. Clothing

As comfy as your old college sweater may be, it could end up costing you more than you’d think in energy costs. If instead, you wear thin and loose clothing, you are not going to have to keep the thermostat on your AC unit as cool. Save the sweater for the winter and cut down on your heating costs.

  1. Keep Doors Closed

While most of us keep our front doors closed for safety reasons, it is also important to remember to close patio doors as well. Additionally, the more you go inside and outside of your house, the more energy is being wasted. Try and keep the number of times you enter into and go outside of your home on those hot Florida summer days. If you prefer to keep your doors open, be sure to turn off your AC, or run it on the basic air setting only.

  1. Outside Units

It is important to make sure that all of your outside air conditioning and heat pump units are not blocked by shrubbery, leaves or other objects. Far too often, these items are planted too close to the air conditioner and heat pump in an effort to hide it, as it can be seen as an eyesore to some homeowners. Make sure that if you do plant anything near your unit, that you leave enough space for air to circulate.

  1. Size of AC Units

You’ll want to make sure that your AC unit or window unit is sized correctly for the space it is intended to cool. Units that are too big or small are going to use more energy than necessary. Window units are not designed to cool more than one room. Even if your home is new, it is possible for builders to miscalculate the size of the unit that you really need. Additionally, multi-story homes should have a separate unit for each floor.