1. Replacing Your Filters
By replacing your filters, you significantly reduce the airflow restrictions and allow the fans and motors of your cooling system to operate more efficiently with less burden. Not only does this make your system more effective at cooling the house, it also saves energy and extends the life of your system by reducing the work load required. As an added bonus, changing your filter also removes any allergens that were trapped, allowing you to breathe a little easier.
2. Setting Your Thermostat
If you’re like most homeowners in San Diego with air-conditioning, you’ve probably already made the upgrade to a programmable thermostat. The most efficient method is to set your thermostat to 12 degrees above the desired temperature while you’re away, then have it begin cooling to the desired level about an hour before you get home. If you leave the A/C off while you’re gone, you’ll come home to a hot house full of hot furniture, walls, and flooring. It takes a lot longer (and a lot more work) for your cooling system to dissipate radiant heat from every object in your home rather than keeping them cool in the first place.
3. Cycling Your A/C
For those who don’t have a programmable thermostat, or those who just don’t know how to program it, your best option is going to be allowing your A/C unit to cycle, as opposed to leaving it off until you want it and then turning it on. When you keep your temperature set to a moderate level (even when you’re away), your air-conditioning system is able to cool the whole house then turn ON and OFF automatically to maintain the temperature. Though it may seem as if this would be more costly to keep the A/C setting ON all day, it actually is more energy efficient. Once the desired temperature is achieved (even early in the morning), your system will cycle ON for 10-20 minutes and then OFF. If the house and furnishings get hot, the system will be forced to work continuously without ever achieving the desired temperature.