It's Just Too Hot! Run Your AC As Efficiently As You Can

It's Just Too Hot! Run Your AC As Efficiently As You Can

Allison Verdoorn
Jul 21, 2011

It's crazy hot here in Minnesota this week, and living in Minnesota we're not used to this kind of heat. Our homes are designed to keep heat inside in the winter leaving us with rather warm spaces in the summer when the heat hits. This week my husband and I caved and started running our air conditioner. We do it as carefully and efficiently as we can! Check out our tips after the jump.

Cool your space just enough to be tolerable. Just because you're turning the air on doesn't mean you need to get it down to 70 degrees. Be mindful of the moment at which your home becomes livable again and just turn it off that way you avoid cooling it excessively.

Clean the unit. A hose can do wonders to how well your AC runs. Pick out leaves and other gunk that has taken root inside and let it run cleanly.

Think about when you run it. So there's been a debate in my circle lately: when should you run your AC? There are two arguments: the first is to run it during the day because your furniture and other surfaces soak up heat during the day and release it at night, so it is better to keep them cool during the day to avoid heating the space later in the day. The other camp says to cool the space only when you are home and to run it at night to get a good night's rest and use it when peak energy isn't as much of an issue. Really, I think the main point here is to not run it for hours on end and target when you use the AC to be most effective in your home.

Use other ways to cool down. Go to the pool, make yourself a cold drink, turn a fan on, take a cool shower or go to the basement. The AC isn't the only way to cool yourself down. Think of creative ways to stop the sweat.

I hope everyone is able to avoid melting these next few days! Do you have any more tips?

Related Posts:
10 Ways to Beat the Heat
8 Tips for a Cool Night's Sleep (Without the AC!)
Tips for Buying an Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner

(Image: Flickr Member Jan Tik licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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