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Spring Tasks to Reduce Your Summer Energy Costs

Save Energy, Reducing Electricity Use
There are several ways that you can lower your air conditioning costs during the warmer months. Do these tasks early in the spring so you're ready for a summer that's more comfortable for both you and your wallet. 

You can perform some of the more simple tasks on your own, but you should always consider using the services of a qualified professional for potentially dangerous and damaging projects such as electrical installations.

Whole-House and Ceiling Fans

Installing whole-house and ceiling fans assists in the process of convection. This is the tendency of air to expand and rise as it becomes heated while cooler air, being denser and heavier in comparison, remains at a lower level.

This process explains why the upper levels of a home are often more difficult to keep cool, resulting in a decrease of the thermostat (and an increase of the electric bill) in order to keep the upper floors comfortable.

A whole-house fan is installed on a roof or attic, pulling hot air out of the top of the house while pulling in fresher and cooler air through doors and windows. This provides greater air circulation throughout the home and is often adequate for comfort on the more temperate days of the summer season.

This idea also applies to ceiling fans in individual rooms. Ceiling fans can be used in a reverse direction to pull warmer air toward the ceiling of a room. However, they can also be used to circulate air in the forward position, assisting in the evaporation of perspiration on the skin, which carries away body heat. 

Installation of either type of fan can be complicated and dangerous, exposing the installer to risk of electrocution and the family and home to the danger of fire through improper installation. The services provided by a professional electrician will give you years of greater comfort and less reliance on expensive air conditioning.

Reflective Roof Coating

If your home has a traditional black roof, it is absorbing the heat from the sun. A reflective coating will result in a roof of a lighter color and brighter reflective surface. This task is also best left to a professional because of the inherent dangers presented in roofing work and the generally unpleasant nature of the job.

If you decide to attempt in on your own, consider performing the work on a cooler day. Black roofs can become unbearably hot in a short time during the summer (hence the need for the roof coating).

This factor, coupled with the reflective nature of the roof coating, can cause an amateur roofer to take an unexpected plunge over the side of the roof or a ladder due to dizziness or temporary blindness. The coating itself is also extremely sticky and difficult to remove from skin and clothing.

Caulking and Insulation

This is an aspect of summer energy savings that you can perform yourself. If your curtains move even slightly when a strong wind blows outside, you need to perform some caulking work.

You must first scrape away any existing caulk with a putty knife before applying new caulk around window and door frames. Take your time and hold the tube of caulk in an upright position to ensure a straight and even application. Caulking should also be done at any breach of exterior walls, such as dryer vents.
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Foam insulation strips can be pressed between the upper and lower sashes or older windows as well as between the lower sashes and the bottom window frames if needed. Foam insulation can also be applied around portable air conditioners installed in windows.

If the attic is still excessively hot even after roof coating has been applied, add fiberglass insulation. You must use insulation with the proper R rating for your attic insulation to achieve optimal results.

Take steps to keep your home cool this year.  Supreme Electric will help you to keep cool and save money this summer. Contact us today for help with any electrical work you need to reduce your heating costs.