Seven Tips to Keep Cool and Lower Home Energy Bills

Chuck Colgan's picture

As Southern California experiences record-breaking heat, many families are looking for ways to keep their homes cool without breaking the bank. CCSE’s Home Energy Coaches offer the following tips, some of which can be done right away.

Quick fixes

  • Drapes Close your drapes or blinds during the day to keep the sun’s heat from radiating through your windows, especially on the south side of your home.
  • Bulbs Replace incandescent light bulbs with CFLs or LEDs. Incandescent bulbs waste 90 percent of the energy they use, which is given off as heat. CFLs and LEDs can make a small difference in keeping your home cooler – plus you’ll lower your electric bill.
  • Fans Use ceiling fans to supplement or replace your air conditioner – but only when you’re in the room. Fans move air, helping you feel cooler, but they don’t lower the temperature of the air.
  • Filters Clean or replace the filter in your HVAC system, so your air conditioner doesn’t have to work so hard to cool air through your home.

Plan ahead

  • Insulate Install more insulation in your attic or walls to keep the heat from penetrating your home.
  • Seal Seal air leakage in your ducts and your home’s shell to make your cool air last longer. A BPI-certified contractor can measure and properly seal air leakage.
  • ENERGY STAR When it’s time to replace your air conditioner, look for the ENERGY STAR label to make sure you are getting a high efficiency model.

You can learn more about home energy upgrades.

Chuck Colgan