Should I close my interior doors when the AC is on?
Cooling a home these days can be expensive – especially in places like we are in down here in Largo, Florida. There’s some months where it even feels like the air conditioner is running more than it’s not running. While that makes things feel more comfortable, to be sure, it also leaves homeowners with a hefty utility bill at the end of the month.
As a result of this, people are always looking for ways to blast the moist, cold air into their homes by spending as little as possible to do it. Some tricks certainly work well – while others don’t. Over time, myths form about what works and doesn’t – as is the case with the topic du jour of the day.
The basic theory is this: if you shut the door to a room you’re not using then you won’t have to cool them – which in the long run saves you lots of money. Unfortunately – that’s just not the case. You don’t want to be closing doors. Not only will this end up costing you more money – it’ll create a whole other host of expensive-to-deal-with issues. Here’s why:
What happens behind closed doors stays behind closed doors
And in this case – that’s a bad thing.
When you shut a door, the air that’s blowing out of the air conditioner builds up and pressurizes the room. At the same time, the return is working overtime to try to suck up enough air to cool the house – not just the room with open doors.
The pressurized cool air is looking for a way out of the room and only does so through cracks in the wall, between, in and around windows. As this continues on for a while – you’ll start to notice it’s more humid in your home. You’ll become aware that the air quality stinks and the utility bill is still as expensive as it’s ever been.
This is happening because so much outside air is being pulled into your home that all sorts of allergens, mold and other problematic presences tend to build up. It’s only when you can balance up the pressure and open up closed-off rooms – that you’ll be able to run your AC at peak condition.
So how can I reduce my energy bill?
While closing doors can create a mess, there are things you can do to keep your bill down. Adding insulation, caulking the trim, sealing cracks, managing your window curtains a bit more prudently – these are all things that can take the edge off and lower your bill. Also bear in mind – it’s the little things that can make the biggest difference. Turning on fans to get better air circulation and installing your AC unit in the shade can make a tremendous difference.
If you’re worried that your AC unit isn’t working as efficiently as it could, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to come and inspect. Until then, stick to these tips and watch you bill become a lot less painful.