Here are some helpful pointers, and recommendations to reduce your home energy and water consumption.
1. Setting the thermostat above 78 degrees. (You could also buy a timer for your thermostat to keep the temperature up while you are at work or gone and then lower it when you are coming home.) We don’t have a timer but we are pretty careful about watching what the thermostat is set at. It really does seem to make a difference.
2. Use ceiling fans. Of course, you need to remember to turn them off when you leave a room. Closing the blinds and/or drapes can help to keep the house cooler too. We’ve installed window tinting on the windows that take the brunt of the afternoon heat. Another helpful tip is to consider planting some trees to give shade on the house. Put up trees to give shade to you home.
3. Changing the air conditioner’s filter at least once a month (or cleaning it once a month if you have an electrostatic air filter.)
4. Check the doors and windows for gaps, which will allow the cooler air to escape. Make repairs where needed. Now, proper insulation levels are important too.
5. Plan on using your microwave more and your stove less. We do this at our house. My wife usually cooks the meals in the morning, and then we reheat them for dinner. It saves time this way as well as prevents us from heating up the kitchen during the hottest part of the day.
6. Make sure you are not over watering your lawn. We have pretty strict watering requirements where we live. If there is a good bit of rainfall you can reduce watering for a couple of days.