Saturday, August 13

How to use your air conditioner so that it spends as little as possible


The high temperatures these days, which in some parts of the country have reached 43ºC and it seems that they will take time to disappear, lead us to the use of fans and air conditioning to mitigate their effects a little.

They are some of the great allies of these days for many people and the main antidotes against the heat wave. But they can also become an extra that will raise our electricity bill if we do not use it efficiently and responsibly. Some specific actions will help us save with the use of these devices and not raise the electricity bill at the end of the month.

Nine tips to save on air conditioning

One of the first steps is to know how much our device consumes. If it has a power of 2000 W per hour (2 kW per hour) it means that every hour that the appliance is cooling at full power it will consume 2000 W.

To know what we consume, we must multiply the average price of electricity by the hours that we have it on to estimate the average cost. And if we want this cost to be as low as possible, it will suffice to apply a series of tips:

  • Buy energy efficient appliances: the label that identifies the appliances indicates the degree of efficiency that it has. The letter A, followed by the symbol + and the color green represent an energy efficient device. Acquiring one with A+++ represents a saving of 40% in energy consumption. It is also true that, despite the fact that the most efficient air conditioners are more expensive, in the medium and long term they represent a great investment.
  • Install Eco mode: yes, in addition to the energy efficiency label, the appliance has an ‘eco’ mode, which will mean extra savings and efficiency. The goal is to raise the setpoint temperature in summer (cooling mode) to save energy.
  • Install appliances away from the sun: as far as possible, it is advisable to install the appliances, both outdoors and indoors, away from the sun so that the system is not damaged, it does not cost so much to operate and, therefore, it does not consume more than necessary. And it is that the installation of the air conditioning in one area or another can affect its performance and consumption.
  • Insulate the rooms of the house well: Lowering the blinds and closing the windows so that the heat does not enter the interior is very important to prevent heat from rising. Likewise, it is advisable to close the doors that connect to the hall or other rooms to prevent fresh air from escaping to other rooms in the house that we do not need to cool.
  • Calculate the right temperature: Choosing well the degrees at which we are going to put the air conditioning is key to not spending more than necessary. In summer, the comfort temperature ranges between 23-25ºC, with a humidity level between 45% and 60%, according to the Regulation of Thermal Installations in Buildings (RITE). The Institute for the Diversification and Saving of Energy (IDEA) considers that the body should adapt to the summer temperature by wearing lighter clothing and setting the thermostat to about 25ºC. We must take into account that each degree of difference between the outside and inside temperature, we will consume 8% more energy.
  • Carry out maintenance on the device: before starting to use the air conditioning we must wash the filters well, which are the ones that prevent dust particles from entering the interior of the house, at least once a year with warm water and put them back once dry. Over time, if they are not cleaned, they become clogged and prevent the air from escaping easily, which results in a loss of efficiency of the device and an increase in cost. It is also important, as advised by the Association of Companies in the Installations and Energy Sector (Guild), check the electrical connections that feed the equipment and the insulation of the cooling circuits, which must be properly insulated; Inadequate insulation will cause an energy loss that translates into higher electricity consumption and lower efficiency.
  • ventilate the house: take advantage of the coolest hours of the day (at night and first thing in the morning) to ventilate the house and lower the temperature of the house.
  • Schedule it to turn off at night: the temperature usually drops at night, which allows us to turn off the air conditioning for a few hours, once we are already asleep. This will allow us to save both on the electricity bill and on consumption and, in addition, as we explain in this article, we will avoid suffering negative effects on our health.
  • Maximize your performance with small actions: some simple gestures will make us take better advantage of the cooling capacity of the air and save even more. For example, turning it off about 15 minutes before leaving the house, since having it on for a long time can cause your electricity bill to skyrocket.

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