With that arrival of spring, a lot of Charleston residents are beginning to think about the approaching heat. Whether you live in an apartment or a home, the summers here can be brutal with the average temperature sitting at 88F. If you're looking to escape the suffocating heat while keeping your energy bills as low as possible then this article is for you.
Apartment Cooling Tips
If you live in an apartment you may or may not have the luxury of an air conditioner. If you do you may not want to run it 24/7 in order to keep electricity bills low. If this sounds like you don't fret, there are several things that you can do to lower the temperature of your apartment to a comfortable level.
The first thing you should do is close your blinds during the day to keep the sun out. If you can open them at nighttime without disrupting your sleep then this will help the heat escape through the glass. If you have windows that open you could also try opening your windows a crack at nighttime to catch any cool night breezes that you might be lucky enough to get. Close them when you wake up again to prevent heat from entering.
If you do have an AC set it to a livable temperature and when you leave your home turn it off or raise the temperature so you're not wasting energy cooling an empty home. Fans can be energy-efficient ways of moving air around. Sitting in front of a fan will allow your body to cool down even though it doesn't actually change the temperature of your home. If you have fans running or the AC on, make sure that the rooms you use frequently have good airflow while you shut the doors to rooms that don't need to be as cool.
House Cooling Tips
If you live in a house you probably have an AC but that doesn't mean you want to run it constantly. A lot of the tips for apartments will also make a big difference in the temperature of your home including keeping the windows and blinds closed during the day and open at night, utilizing airflow and running fans.
If you have a two-story home you should also close the heat registers partially in the upstairs rooms. This will allow any cool air from your AC to remain trapped upstairs because cool air naturally flows down. If you have ceiling fans you should ensure that they're running counterclockwise. This will force the cool air down while pulling the hot air upwards.
If you own your own home you should consider updating your insulation or getting an expert to come out and look for leaks. You'd be surprised at how much of your money and cool air is disappearing through cracks in your home or thin insulation. This can cost a bit of money but you'll reap the rewards rather quickly in how much it lowers your electricity bill.
Whether you live in an apartment, a single-story home, or a multi-level home there are plenty of practical ways that you can lower the temperature in your home while lowering your electricity bills at the same time. Try some of the above tips to stay cool this summer and keep your money in your wallet where it belongs.