With records being shattered across much of the country, there’s no arguing that summer has arrived with a vengeance. Many people find themselves wondering how to keep cool as the mercury climbs. You might even be considering adding a ductless mini-split system to help cool parts of your house. Of course, it’s not just about comfort – it’s also about energy efficiency to save money and spare resources. What are the most efficient ways to cool your home this summer?
1. Keep Your Blinds Closed During the Day
Sure, everyone loves the bright summer sunshine. However, it can dramatically increase the temperature inside your home (by as much as 30%). Open blinds let in light and heat, but then keep the heat trapped within your home. Close your blinds (or curtains) before the sun gets up very high and you’ll save yourself some discomfort.
What if you can’t do without some of the light? If you’re starved for sunshine, keep just your south and west-facing windows covered and you’ll be able to reduce your temperature while still getting the light you need.
2. Open Windows and Use Fans
Once the sun starts to go down, open your windows. Depending on where you live, evening air can be significantly cooler than the hot, stuffy air trapped inside your home. Leave them open throughout the evening if possible to allow maximum cooling.
To ramp up the effects, even more, combine open windows with fans. You can place box fans in the windows to pull cool, nighttime air inside. Or, you could invest in a whole-home fan (sometimes called an attic fan) that is powerful enough to pull air through all open windows.
3. Install a Ductless Mini Split Unit
Another option is to use a ductless mini-split unit (or units). These offer considerable cooling capabilities, but they don’t require a network of ducts to transport cooled air throughout the home. They cool the room they’re installed in, and because there are no ducts, you get maximum cooling with less energy expenditure (saving money and natural resources).
Not sure if a ductless mini-split is right for your needs? If you have thought about installing a window air conditioner, a ductless mini-split is a worthwhile alternative that can provide better performance and improved energy efficiency. They can also be installed in rooms without windows, making them more flexible than other options, as well.
4. Check and Replace Insulation
Insulation helps your home maintain a consistent temperature all year long. However, it can become dispersed and damaged over time. While there’s probably very little you can do about the insulation in your home’s walls, you can (and should) check the attic or crawlspace. If the insulation is a bit thin, lay more down.
Pay attention to the R-value of your insulation, too. The higher the R-value, the better it will be at its job. Combined with the other steps we’ve listed, replacing your insulation will help keep your home cooler while reducing your utility bills.
Mini - split systems chill like a regular air conditioner, then heat like a traditional furnace. It's a cost-effective and efficient way to regulate the temperature of a room in any season.
Keeping cool this summer doesn’t have to mean spending a fortune. Use the tips above to create a comfortable place for you and your family. If you're interested in adding a mini-split AC unit to your home, contact Home Mechanics today!
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