CHARLOTTE, N.C., July 18, 2007 – Did you know that during the summer months, air conditioning is the single biggest drain on your power bill? With so many costs on the rise – like gas, groceries and utilities – LendingTree.com provides these tips to help reduce your household costs this summer.
Keep the hot air out and the cool air in – Take a lesson from people living in hot climes: cover sun-baked windows with either awnings, shade trees or high bushes. Shade trees also block the sun from your roof and outside walls. And speaking of your roof, dark materials absorb heat and funnel it straight into your house. If you have a dark roof, all the more important to have good insulation between it and the living areas of your house. Check your windows and doors for air leaks and use caulk or weather-stripping to close them. Double-paned windows will decrease heat-exchange by up to 50%.
Hidden sources of heat – In addition to cooling your house from outside temperatures, your air conditioner unit has to overcome heat generated from inside the house as well. Did you know that most of the energy produced by incandescent bulbs is heat-energy, not light? Switch to fluorescent bulbs. Other “hidden” sources of heat: the dishwasher’s heated drying cycle (let the dishes drip-dry), the oven (use the microwave instead), and “always-on” small appliances like computers and electronics (turn them off when not in use).
Vary your cooling techniques – When the days are mild and breezy, or when the nights are cool, turn off the air conditioner and open the windows. Use ceiling fans to keep the air moving or consider having a whole house fan installed: with the windows open this powerful fan pulls cooler air from outside. Another good use of fans: leave your air conditioner window unit on low and place a fan in front of it to disperse cool air through other rooms. If you live in a very dry area look into an evaporation cooler. It uses three-quarters less energy and works by cooling air from outside across water-soaked pads.
Be nice to your air conditioner – Take a look at how you dress around the house. If you’re wearing a sweatshirt and warm socks, you can probably dress down a bit and turn the temperature up a few degrees. Turn your thermostat even higher when you’re out of the house more than a few hours. The more humidity in your home, the harder your air conditioner unit has to work. In very hot weather, try to limit humidity producing activities – showering, cooking, washing – to early mornings or late evenings.
For other ways to keep money in your wallet this summer, check out the LendingTree Smart Borrower Center by visiting www.lendingtree.com/smartborrower.
About LendingTree, LLC
LendingTree, LLC is the nation’s number one online lending exchange, providing a marketplace that connects consumers with multiple lenders that compete for their business. Since inception, LendingTree has facilitated more than 20 million loan requests and $152 billion in closed loan transactions. LendingTree provides access to mortgages and refinance loans, home equity loans/lines of credit, auto loans, personal loans, credit cards and high-yield savings accounts via www.lendingtree.com and 800-555-TREE.
Launched in 1998 with headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, LendingTree, LLC also owns and operates LendingTree Loans sm, LendingTree Settlement Services, LLC, GetSmart®, and HomeLoanCenter.com. LendingTree, LLC is an operating company of IAC.