Many homeowners wish to save money and avoid paying high heating bills. Overlooking basic, straightforward options, such as shutting off an air conditioner when the temperature reaches a specific point, can affect energy consumption. Another supposedly tried-and-true method involves opening a window to get some cool air inside. Is that plan as workable as it sounds?
Letting Cool Air Inside the Home
When the temperature drops outside, opening the windows could allow fresh, cool air to enter. The cool air may bring the temperature down in a stuffy house, and a home could get stuffy when all the windows and doors remain closed.
Turning on the air conditioner would lower the temperature since the AC generates cooler air. An open window could do the same, and there wouldn’t be any energy costs associated with the air coming through the window. And there may be some additional benefits to opening a home’s window.
Stuffy and stale air could do more than making a house’s occupants feel uncomfortable. A closed-off home might have toxins in the air. Anyone breathing in that same air could become exposed to viruses, mold spores, and other impurities found inside.
Opening a window could have limitations for improving air quality. Perhaps requesting an air quality test or signing up for indoor air quality services might help. Home and business owners in the Denver, CO region may call Coffman & Company any for their air conditioner and heating needs. Our team could assist with AC repair, maintenance, and installation duties.
Concerns About Outdoor Air
Just as cool air enters through open windows, so might hot air. As the hot air works its way through the indoors, the temperature could rise significantly. During the day, someone could shut the windows and power up the air conditioner right away. Running the air conditioner longer may be unavoidable when the windows remain open throughout the night, and the interior fills with hot air. Energy bills and waste might increase dramatically since the air conditioner must contend with cooling a home when the outside temperature might be well into the 70s.
Other issues could arise when leaving a window open unattended in the evening. The weather could change without warning, or the homeowner could miss a weather report and not know a summer storm is on the way. Once the rain starts to fall hard, water could come inside and cause additional problems. Therefore, there are risks associated with opening windows.
Keeping the Windows Closed
If you need to turn on the air conditioner, be sure to close the windows. Open windows won’t help anyone save energy when the cool air from the vents travels outside while the hot air from the exterior enters through the window. The temperature might reach the desired level eventually, but running the unit with the windows open contributes to waste.
Maybe someone should go to each window and make sure they are closed. Looking at the window and tapping on the glass might not be enough. Look down at where the window meets the windowsill to make sure the window is fully closed. A cracked window could be enough to let the cool air out and run up energy bills.
Sunlight Entering the Home
Closing the windows may need to go hand in hand with lowering shades or closing blinds. Window glass doesn’t keep sunlight out, and sunlight could warm up an interior. As with hot air entering, a sunlight-caused temperature increase might stress the air conditioner. Anything that boosts the temperature makes the air conditioner work harder.
Air Conditioner Tune-Ups and Efficiency
When a home becomes too warm due to hot air entering, an air conditioner might have to work much harder to bring the temperature down. That would be the case with a perfectly efficient air conditioner. If the air conditioner needs a tune-up, the system might have to work even harder and use far more energy. Take that as a reason why it might be wise to request a tune-up and inspection before the hot summer months.
Replacing an old filter with a new one and performing a thorough cleaning may maximize the system’s performance. A technician could also look for worn parts and other problems. Upon discovering an issue, the technician may suggest a fix.
At Coffman & Company, we employ NATE-certified technicians who can provide heating and cooling services to local customers. We’ve been in business for 35 years and also offer plumbing and indoor air quality work. Contact our offices today to schedule a visit for an estimate.