Archive for Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Cool Savings: Expert offers tips on air conditioning

Air conditioning technician Phil Foster fills out paperwork after servicing a unit. 
Bruce Snead, a K-State Research and Extension residential energy specialist, answers questions about how to help keep the lid on cooling costs.

Air conditioning technician Phil Foster fills out paperwork after servicing a unit. Bruce Snead, a K-State Research and Extension residential energy specialist, answers questions about how to help keep the lid on cooling costs.

June 22, 2011

Bruce Snead, K-State Research and Extension  residential energy specialist, answers questions about holding down cooling costs this summer.

Q: What’s the best temperature to set my thermostat?

A: Pick a comfortable temperature. Be aware, however, that unnecessary cooling can be costly, as homeowners can save 1 to 3 percent of their cooling costs for each degree of higher setting on their thermostat.

Q: I’m not always home, but I want the house cool when I get there. What can I do?

A: Install a programmable thermostat to cool the home when needed, and reduce cooling when away from the home. In Kansas, customers of Westar are encouraged to consider a WattSaver Program offering a free programmable thermostat to improve energy efficiency and reduce cooling costs.

Q: Servicing my air conditioner is costly. Is it worth the money?

A: There is a cost to a service call, but a savings as well, if a routine inspection reveals potential problems before a breakdown occurs. Regularly scheduled maintenance also helps to maintain the efficiency of the system and can prolong its length of service.

Q: What are some easy steps to take to save over the long term?

A: Indoors, keep blinds or other window coverings closed during the day. Outside, plant shade trees to shield a home from the sun; the trees will need time to grow, and, in the interim, plant vines on a trellis to shield windows from the sun.

Q: Any other advice?

A: Invest in a home energy audit to see if adding insulation, caulking, weather stripping, etc., will result in a savings. For more information, go online to efficiencykansas.com to learn about a low-cost energy audit and loan program to improve energy efficiency.

Comments

Stacy Napier 3 years, 3 months ago

Wattsaver program. Wow that would be nice. We are stuck with this government owned Electricity and Water that provides nothing to users who try to conserve or save. We loose out on KCPL's rebates for new AC units $650 or $850 right now. Reverse metering for those who generate their own power. Rebates for water saving toilets / facuets.
My parents got $1500 back from KCPL last year when they put in a new AC.

We all would benefit if everyone used 10% less power. Everyones rate and fuel surcahrge could go down.

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