It seems like we spend the summer months constantly battling the temperature inside the house. Even if you’re following the best practice guidelines for normal summer thermostat setting (which is 78 degrees during the daylight hours, by the way) there’s always something that seems to spike the temperature. This can lead to thermostat wars as one person adjusts the setting, another person re-adjusts it, and so on.
What’s causing those temperature fluctuations in the first place, though? Your Olathe heating and cooling pros are here to help walk you through the top ten things that you might be doing to heat up the house during the summer without even knowing it! Without further ado, let’s get started and see if we can’t get those temperatures a little more manageable before it gets toohot out there.
1. Opening curtains, blinds, and shutters. This goes double for rooms that are directly exposed to the sun. Yeah, it’s nice to see sunshine and green grass, and nobody wants to feel like a prisoner in their own home, but those windows are letting in a lot of heat. All of that extra heat is cooking your rooms and making the air conditioner run overtime. Nobody wants to feel like a roast turkey in their own home, either.
2. Cooking up a big dinner. Speaking of cooking, running appliances that generate heat will do more to heat up your house than you might think. Only run the oven or stove when you have to. The rest of the time, try preparing a cool summer salad with some cut fruit or use the grill out in the back yard.
3. Letting your ceiling fans run in the wrong direction. You probably already know that there’s a little switch on the side of your ceiling fan that changes the direction the blades turn. But did you know that flipping that switch when the season changes can have a big impact on how hot or cold a room feels? During the summer months, you want your fans to be turning counterclockwise to push cool air down and create a nice breeze.
4. Trimming those shade trees in the yard. Not everything that causes heat to build up in your house is something that you do inside. Those shade trees in the yard help you feel cooler when you’re outside on a hot summer day, and they also protect your house from the direct rays of the sun. Keep them trimmed back enough to protect roofs and windows in the event of a summer thunderstorm, but don’t trim them so much that you lose the benefit of the shade.
5. Leaving the garage door closed. Your garage isn’t air conditioned like the rest of your house, and the heat that builds up inside it during the day can actually seep into the rest of your home, especially if your garage faces south and west. Fortunately, if you leave the garage door open just a crack during the day, natural circulation of the air will help take care of that.
6. Neglecting your HVAC system. During the summer months, your air conditioner gets a workout. That’s unavoidable. What’s not unavoidable are breakdowns and other costly problems. An Olathe air conditioning tune-up will help catch problems before they begin and help ensure that your air conditioner is running at peak efficiency when you need it most. While you’re at it, be sure that you’re changing those air filters regularly! An air conditioning pro will change them for you during a tune-up, but you should do it the rest of the time.
7. Taking hot showers. When we come back from a run or from working in the yard, nothing feels better than a hot shower. But taking a hot shower (especially a long one) not only makes us feel hotter, it also fills the house with hot and humid air, which the air conditioner then has to work to mitigate. Try a cooler shower or try to use hot water for the first part of your shower and gradually decrease the temperature until you’re done.
8. Doing the laundry during the hottest part of the day. Remember what we said about the stove and oven? It goes for the dryer, too. Think about it: The dryer dries your clothes using hot air, and the moisture from your clothes has to go somewhere, which means added humidity. Try running the dryer only after 8 o’clock at night or so, and you’ll find that you avoid some of those temperature spikes.
9. Leaving lights, TVs, or computers on all day. Sure, electronics like TVs and computers may not generate a lot of heat, but even a little goes a long way, especially when they’re on all day long. Light bulbs are even worse. Did you know that around 90% of the energy used by incandescent light bulbs goes toward generating heat, rather than light? Turn them off when you’re not using them, and if you’ve still got incandescent bulbs, consider switching to some more energy-efficient options.
10. Running in and out of the house. What did your mom and dad yell when you and your siblings kept running in and out of the house during the summer months? “We’re not air conditioning the whole neighborhood!” They had a point. When you go in and out a lot, you’re doing just that. Worse yet, you’re letting a lot of hot air into the house that your A/C has to try to keep up with.
Fortunately, just knowing these summer tips and tricks can help keep the house (and its occupants) cool all summer long and help you reduce your energy bills while you’re at it. That’s not all! You’ll also put less strain on your air conditioner, which will help it last all through the summer, especially if you have the Olathe heating and cooling pros give it a tune-up before the weather gets too nasty.
To schedule your Olathe air conditioning tune-up or for any of your other heating and cooling needs this summer, call Davenport Service Company at 913-441-2222 today!