With another hot summer coming, it is time to think about cooling options. There are some choices available for instant relief from high-powered fans, to home-ducted air conditioning systems and everything in between.
New research from Mitsubishi Electric reveals that 20% of Australians are leaving their A/C on while no one’s home, bumping up their energy bills unnecessarily.
We asked Atesh Mani, Mitsubishi Electric Australia Air Conditioning National Product Manager, to share five ways that Aussie households can cut their energy bill in half this summer.
1. Remember to close the door
Air conditioners work most efficiently when in closed spaces, so it’s best to position your device far away from the front door and away from windows where sunlight regularly enters. This will ensure that the cool air continues to circulate throughout the house without uncontrolled amounts of heat entering. Sunlight streaming in through the windows raises the temperature of a room so it’s a good idea to invest in some light blocking curtains or shade trees for outside of windows too. A door snake to keep the hot air out is another great cost effective option.
2. Only cool the rooms you use
Ensuring you have the appropriate home cooling system type is a vital step in minimising energy wastage this summer season. Low-cost and easy to install wall-mounted split systems are a fantastic option for cooling commonly used spaces, such as the living room or bedroom, rather than paying to cool the whole home. This is a much more efficient way of keeping cool as compared to, for example, full-home cooling via multi-split or ducted systems. There are also minimal, stylish touches that you can add to a room to create a fresh feeling such as packing away the fuzzy wooly throws and pillows and replacing with blue or white based colour interior over the summer months.
3. Pick the right temperature
With Australians concern around the cost of energy increasing it makes sense for us to take a few simple steps to keep those electricity bills as low as possible. Pay attention to your temperature settings. This can be a cause of many a family argument, so if you’re battling for control of the temperature gauge, remind your home companions that for every 1°C change in a thermostat setting, it’s estimated that our heating or cooling bill rises by around 10%
4. Regular system maintenance
Regular maintenance will improve the performance and extend the life of your existing home air conditioning system. To ensure your system is operating with maximum efficiency, clean your unit as instructed by the manufacturer and have it serviced regularly.
As a general rule of thumb the more a fan runs and the dirtier the conditions the more often the filters require cleaning. However; humidity can also play a role because the more moisture in the air, the more dust can adhere to the filter, fan blade and indoor coil. This will reduce the amount of air that the fan moves. The less air the fan moves means that the unit can go into fault or cause the system to run at a reduced capacity.
If you are currently in the market for a new system, keep an eye out for easy-clean features which will allow for hassle-free maintenance between servicing.
5. Selecting the right rooms
If you’re thinking about upgrading your A/C, the first decision to make is to decide which room to place the air conditioner. Attempting to cool your whole abode will see energy bill costs spike, so it’s best to position the air conditioner in between the rooms where you spend the most amount of time. Depending on your lifestyle, this could be anywhere from the living room to the kitchen, with the bedroom being a popular choice for a cool and peaceful night’s sleep. The air conditioner should ideally sit in a shaded area of the selected room, such as in a corner that receives little sunlight and is away from other devices.
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