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Heating and Cooling How to keep cool at home without breaking the bank

Published on July 18th, 2014 | by Staff


How to keep cool at home without breaking the bank

1. Use lighting as needed only.

Lighting generates heat so reducing the use of lamps and lights may result in a notable reduction in room temperature. Make a habit of switching off lights when exiting a room. Use only necessary lights. For example, reading a book may only require a reading lamp, not overhead lighting.

2. Put the ceiling fan to work in the evening.

In most regions, temperatures drop dramatically in the evening hours, making it unnecessary to use an air conditioner or central air conditioning system. A ceiling fan may be sufficient in keeping the home comfortable.

3. Close drapes and shades in sunny conditions.

Homes that receive a lot of direct sunshine may benefit from closed drapes or shades to block some of the room-warming sunlight. This simple action may reduce room temperature by several degrees.

4. Wear summer clothing.

Attire has an important role in comfort levels in homes. Wear shorts and sleeveless shirts instead of pants and long-sleeve shirts at home may enable the thermostat to be set a lower temperature.

5. Tune up window ACs or central air conditioning systems for greater efficiency, reduced energy consumption and to extend the life of the equipment.

a. Window air conditioner maintenance tips:
i. Clean the air filter.
Disconnect power to the AC before performing any maintenance. On most ACs, removing the front panel provides access to the filter. Use warm water and a small amount of dish soap or white vinegar and gently clean the filter. Be sure that the filter is completely dry before returning it to the air conditioner. If the filter has any damage (i.e. tears, holes, etc.), it should be replaced. Foam filters can be replaced using electrostatic filter material (about $12) and cut it with scissors to fit particular model sizes.

AC filter material 00587004


ii. Clean the condenser coils.
Condenser coils have the important role of removing heat. When dust and dirt naturally build up on the coils, heat is less efficiently removed. The air conditioner is then forced to use more energy to do its job. Dust and dirt on the coils can be removed by blowing condensed air, using a soft bristle brush and a cleaning solution made specifically for condenser coils.

Related info
Air conditioner maintenance tips

b. Central air conditioning system maintenance tips:
i. Take good care of the condensing unit (the unit installed outdoors)

  • Regularly check the condensing unit for insect and animal nests.
  • Use a garden hose to remove debris such as leaves and twigs.

ii. Replace or clean the air handler or furnace air filter.
A dirty air filter will cause the furnace or air handler to consume more energy. Replace it or clean it at least every three months. Earlier this year, we introduced a line of RepairClinic-exclusive air filters with features to dramatically improve air quality by trapping impurities and stopping them from circulating in homes.

Related info
Central air conditioning system maintenance tips


6. Inspect the vent registers for blockage.

Use a flashlight to check the registers and remove air-flow restrictions such as fallen objects. Remove rugs, curtains, furniture or other objects that may restrict air flow.

7. Pay attention to changes in performance of air conditioners and central air conditioning systems.

Troubleshoot at the first signs of changes in performance in equipment such as increased noise levels or leaking.

Get repair help for window air conditioners, central air conditioning systems and other heating and cooling equipment.

8. Consider installing a programmable thermostat.

A programmable thermostat enable convenient control of a home’s temperature while family members are away from home.

What would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below.

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Since 1999, three and a half million people have purchased replacements parts and accessories from RepairClinic and saved more than $260 million in repair costs by fixing appliances, lawn equipment, power tools, and heating & cooling equipment on their own. From the beginning, RepairClinic has provided free troubleshooting and how-to resources on its website.

The company’s 2,000+ free how-to repair and how-it-works videos on its YouTube channel have been viewed more than 41 million times.

RepairClinic’s free, advanced online repair help system empowers do-it-yourselfers to fix common problems associated with home appliances, lawn equipment, power tools and heating & cooling equipment. DIYers can enter a model number to choose from a list of common symptoms for that particular model, troubleshoot and watch award-winning, expertly-produced videos to learn the most likely causes and conditions and purchase the correct part. stocks more than one million parts and accessories for 160 brands of lawn mowers, small engines, snowblowers, string trimmers, furnaces, air conditioners, air handlers, heat pumps, washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, vacuum cleaners, power tools and many other products.

Since 1999, the company has served more than three million customers including homeowners, first-time and beginner DIYers, advanced DIYers, appliance repair professionals, small engine repair shops and landscaping and lawn care business owners. RepairClinic orders are backed by a 365 Days. Period.® return policy that enables customers to return any part. Of the more than one million parts available on the website, 95 percent of parts ordered are in stock and guaranteed to ship the same business day. RepairClinic ships within the United States, U.S. territories and military bases and Canada.

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About the Author staff members enjoy dozens of daily conversations with RepairClinic’s customer community every day. We're inspired by our customers' stories of successful DIY repairs, major money savings and empowerment to tackle many repair projects on their own. Every day, our 2,200+ free how-to videos are viewed 60,000 times. Visit and join us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

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