Hot summer months mean rising temperatures, and air conditioners are working overtime all over the country. The Department of Energy estimates that heating and cooling make up to around half of total household expenses, and you may be looking for ways to reduce your electric bill while maintaining a comfortable home. What many homeowners do is to close the doors of unused rooms, thinking that it reduces the space that their AC needs cool. But does this actually work?
How Closed Doors Affect Energy Efficiency
In theory, closing those doors to rooms you’re not using might sound good, but it’s actually a myth. In fact, shutting the doors to unused rooms can even increase your energy consumption. Closing doorways blocks efficient energy circulation throughout your home.
Your air conditioning system only works well when the volume of air provided through the supply registers equal the air returning to the air handler or furnace. When you close your doors, the rooms in your home become pressurized. In turn, conditioned air is pushed through small openings. As a result, these pressurized rooms begin leaking air.
That wasted air tends to be replaced equally, potentially raising the amount of drawn air up to 900%. This seriously raises your energy bills and lowers your home’s energy efficiency.
What to Do Instead
Clearly, closing doors to save some energy is not effective. However, there are still other options to keep cooling costs down without sacrificing the comfort of your home.
For one, consider opening your windows then turning off your AC at night while you are sleeping. In the morning, make sure your blinds and windows are shut tight, so that no cool air can escape.
You may also install window coverings to prevent heat gain and air leakage through your windows. In addition, ensure that your thermostat is operating efficiently. A ceiling fan can also be a valuable tool for energy conservation as it helps circulate cooled air without reducing your comfort.
Follow Regular A/C Maintenance
Finally, regular maintenance for your cooling system is essential in making sure it’s in top order. Quick and skilled air conditioning repair in Shreveport, LA also helps keep your system working properly while preventing potential trouble. AC professionals can also suggest safe, effective, and reliable ways to improve your home’s energy efficiency which, in turn, can help you save a few bucks on your next utility bill.
SPRING AND SUMMER ENERGY-SAVING TIPS, energy.gov
Summer Time Energy-Saving Tips, consumerenergycenter.org