If you've been watching the news or refreshing your weather app, you know that August is shaping up to be a very warm month in the PNW. With temperatures nearing 100 degrees, this is weather that we rain-boot-wearing, overcast-sky-gazing Pacific Northwesterners aren't accustomed to experiencing. Creating a cool haven within your home will allow you to enjoy the warm weather instead of dreading it… or sticking your head in the refrigerator. Here are a few tips to help you beat the heat.
Revamp or install air conditioning.
Sure, this one is obvious. In weather like this, air conditioning creates an oasis for you and your family. You may hear people say that air conditioning is “not necessary in the Northwest.” Wrong! With each passing summer, rising temperatures necessitate air conditioning. Luckily for homeowners, cooling systems continue to improve in performance and energy efficiency, so there’s never been a better time to make this important home investment. Here are a few options:
Heat pump: This all-in-one system provides energy efficient heating and cooling. This is a great option for homes with an older or inefficient furnace.
Air conditioning unit: If you have an energy efficient furnace, you may just need an air conditioning unit.
Ductless systems: For homes without ducts (and even those with them), ductless systems are a cost effective option. These workhorses allow homeowners to heat and cool specific areas, saving money and energy.
Replace or fix your windows.
Energy efficient windows make a big difference in home comfort and cooling. Old, cracked, or broken windows or windowpanes allow warm air to enter the home, and cold air to escape. If you’re dealing with aluminum framed or single pane windows, this might be the time to upgrade to vinyl windows. You will also be making an investment in future winter comfort, as energy efficient windows will help keep your home warm when the weather turns cold. If your windows are already vinyl, but leaking air, be sure to caulk and seal any cracks and air leaks. A slow leak of hot air really adds up… especially in your wallet.
Weatherproof your front door.
When we hear the word “weatherproof”, it’s easy to think of blustery winds and relentless rains. But weatherproofing is also crucial in the summer, particularly for doors. Is your weather stripping around the door cracked or insufficiently affixed to the door frame? Don’t waste precious cool air—fix it ASAP. It’s an inexpensive way to keep cool air where it should be.
Install a programmable thermostat.
Is your home stifling when you get home from work? Is it already stuffy when you wake up in the morning? Cool your home on your schedule with a programmable thermostat. With several utilitarian and high tech options from Honeywell, Washington Energy Services has a thermostat to meet any need and budget.
Conduct a home energy audit.
Through comprehensive testing, a Home Energy Audit from Washington Energy Services can pinpoint the areas where your home isn’t performing to its full potential. This includes areas where you may be losing cool air, and ultimately, losing money.
We may already be in the middle of summer, but there’s plenty more heat to come. Keep your home cool and your family comfortable with help from Washington Energy Services.
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