In the Charlotte area of North Carolina, summer is hot and humid with temperatures averaging in the mid to high 90s. Air conditioning in this part of the country is not a luxury; it’s a necessity. That said, however, it’s important to try and “green up” your home and save money by minimizing use of your air conditioner. Here are some ways to do this:

  • Dress lightly if it’s hot, and set the air conditioner to a little higher temperature.
  • Use an indoor fan along with your air conditioning unit to disperse the cooled air through your home more efficiently.
  • Never set the thermostat to a colder setting when first switching the air conditioning unit on. It’s not going to cool your home any quicker. In fact, it will increase energy consumption and could cause the air conditioning unit to freeze over.
  • When it’s cool in the morning and night, open the windows and doors. Your home will stay cool for a while, depending on how well it’s sealed and insulated. When it starts getting hot, turn on the air conditioning until after the sun has gone down. Then open the doors and windows again to let the cool air in.
  • To cut down on extra heat, close the blinds on the west, east and south-facing windows. Better still, install shade screens or exterior shades to block the heat before it even gets into your house.
  • If your air conditioning unit is old, consider purchasing an Energy Star rated model. You can save between 10 and 14 percent of your energy costs.