Tag Archives: electric bill

How Humidity Affects You and Your Home – What You Can Do…

23 Aug
humidity in your home

What is humidity? How it affects you and what you can do.

 

You’ve all heard of the old adage, “It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.”

In certain areas of the country, including Southwest Florida, humidity is at a record high.

What is humidity? Simply, it is a quantity representing the amount of water vapor in the air.

Humidity is measured in two ways:

1) Absolute humidity:

The percentage of water vapor actually present in the air.

2) Relative humidity:

Divided by the amount of water that could be present in the air, plus temperature.

Often expressed by weathermen, relative humidity of air is a function of both water content and temperature, expressed in percents.

In more simple terms, how comfortable you feel, in regards to how the temperature relates to that vapor.

Humidity and Air Conditioning

Air conditioners function to cool homes by removing heat and moisture from the air. When humidity levels are excessive, they have to work significantly harder.

That means a/c wear and tear, and higher electric bills.  Plus, you just don’t feel comfortable.

Common Signs of High Humidity in your Home

What are the signs?

* Actually, your skin will give you a clue – Does your skin feel moist or “clammy”? It is a key sign of high humidity.

* Feeling warmer than it should – Ideally, the thermostat in a home should be set between 71 and 78 degrees. This is optimal in terms of comfort and cost. However, this range won’t produce truly comfortable results if humidity levels fall below 50 percent.

* Foggy windows – When humidity is present, it is due to vaporized water in the air. When it becomes bottled up in your home, it may fog up the windows.

* A musty odor – Excessive humidity causes dampness around the home, something you CAN smell.

Damages from Humidity

Mold and mildew thrive in high humidity. and can cause costly damage to furniture, electronics, cabinets and more.

Air Conditioners and Cooling Capacity

Bigger isn’t always better. People often assume that the larger and more powerful an air conditioner, the more effectively it is in cooling and controlling humidity.

That’s not necessarily true. If your air conditioner’s capacity is much larger than needed, it won’t be able to remove moisture as effectively and humidity levels will remain high.

Why? More powerful air conditioners don’t need to run as much, so they don’t get a chance to remove as much moisture from the air. This is why it’s crucial to buy an air conditioner that suits your home.

Service

Servicing your air conditioning unit is critical to battling humidity. At minimum, filters should be changed monthly, an easy do-it-yourself. Full services should be yearly or bi-annually, and can be set up with maintenance agreements that will save you money in utility costs and help you battle humidity.

RDS Air Conditioning specializes in checking and servicing a/c units and is expert at installation, maintenance and repair. Maintenance Agreements are semi-annual and affordable.  RDS even offers an A/C Protection Plan.  Serving Naples, Bonita Springs, Estero and Fort Myers.

RDS Air Conditioning is a Certified Florida Contractor. Lic. #CAC1816713. Don’t settle for less, Use RDS!

Simple Summer Air Conditioning Savings

3 Jul
hot summer sun

Summer heat can be unrelenting but you can still stay cool without breaking the bank

Record high temperatures hit Southwest Florida in late June, and some health experts say 2014 is one of the worst allergy seasons ever so many will be using their air conditioning much more than usual.

Here are some simple summer-specific tips that can save you money on your electric bill and keep you healthier.

  • According to State of Florida energy experts, you can save 15% to 25% just by using ceiling fans with your air conditioning and turning your thermostat to 80 or 81 degrees. You’ll get the same indoor temperature as the recommended 78 degree setting.
  • Don’t kick start your air by dropping that ideal 78 degree temp mark as many are tempted to do. It can almost double your energy bill for that time.
  • Get in the habit of closing all shades and drapes during the blazing heat of the day, and turning off lights when you leave a room. Less light equals less heat.
  •  Move your favorite foods, the ones you take out the most, to the front of the fridge. Less cool air will escape the less time the refrigerator door is open.
  •  Change your air conditioning filter once a month. It will add to energy efficiency, and help with allergies.  Some people prefer to use a hepa filter as it will remove more allergens from the air.
  • Have your a/c ducts cleaned for energy efficiency and to help reduce allergens.
  •  In summer rainy season, yards grow faster and trees lose branches with heavy rains. Clear debris often around your a/c unit for maximum performance. Two feet of clear space is recommended.
  •  Plant shade trees to keep you cool outdoors and shade your roof, but don’t plant them too close to your air conditioning unit.
  • Get out the caulk and weather-stripping to stop air leaks around windows and doors.
  • Check your clothes dryer vent and clean the lint trap or filter often. Make sure the vent is blowing the most hot air and moisture out-of-doors.
  • Use your microwave as much as possible versus your range or oven to keep as much heat as possible out of the kitchen.
  • Never use the “fan” setting on your thermostat. Use “auto” for lower electric bills.
  • Most importantly, get your a/c unit checked and maintenance work done regularly for peak performance.

Be Safe when Outside in the Summer Heat

Watch for signs of hyperthermia. Hyperthermia is defined as elevated body temperature due to failed thermoregulation that occurs when a body produces or absorbs more heat than it dissipates.

There are three main types of hyperthermia:
– Heat syncope – Sudden dizziness when active during hot weather.
– Heat exhaustion – The body losing the ability to keep itself cool.
– Heat cramps – Painful muscle tightening in stomach, arms or legs.

If you feel any of these signs, get indoors to the cool air immediately and seek medical attention if severe.

It is better to complete outdoor tasks early in the morning or later in the evening when it’s not as hot.

RDS Air Conditioning specializes in maintaining and servicing a/c units and are experts at air conditioning repair.  They will even clean your air conditioning ducts and dryer vent.

Serving all of your air conditioning needs in Naples, Bonita Springs, Estero and Fort Myers.

RDS Air Conditioning is a Certified Florida Contractor. Lic. #CAC1816713. Don’t settle for less, Use RDS!

 

14 Tips for Saving Money on Your Electric Bill

10 Jan
save money on your electric bill

With a few tweaks you can reduce your electric bill.

We all use electricity everyday for lighting, cooling and heating our homes and water plus for running appliances and technology.

Every month when your electric bill arrives and you see the total, do you ever wish you knew ways to reduce that number?

Here are some tips for saving money on your monthly electric bill:

  1. Have a programmable thermostat installed in your home and save up to 10% on your electric bill.
  2. Install solar energy screens (mesh like screens) into your windows to block heat from the sun getting into and heating your home.
  3. Use energy saving appliances.
  4. If you have a refrigerator in your garage and your garage is not air conditioned, it can add to your electric bill.
    Refrigerators are made to be in an air conditioned space and when it is not, the refrigerator’s compressor will have to work much harder to keep it cold.
  5. The sun shining on your roof and home can cause heat to accumulate inside. Plant trees with shading leaves around your home to block the sun but be careful not to plant anything close to or over top of your a/c unit so that the air around your a/c unit can flow freely.
  6. Reduce your water heater temperature from 140 degrees to 120 degrees.
  7. Turn off your room’s ceiling fan when you leave the room. 
  8. According to FPL, plug your electronics into a power strip to save on phantom loads. Turn the strip off when not in use and save up to $100 a year.
  9. Choose energy saving bulbs.
  10. Have an a/c professional tune up your air conditioning unit to keep it running efficiently to save on your electric bill.
  11. Don’t use more water than needed when doing laundry. Set the water level to match the load size.
  12. Dry clothing faster by cleaning the lint filter between every load and have your dryer vent cleaned regularly. 
  13. Make sure your a/c duct work is not leaking as this can drive up your electric bill.
  14. Do not run your thermostat temperature lower than needed and raise it when you go out.

As you can see there are ways to streamline your monthly electric bill. RDS Air Conditioning can help by checking to make sure duct work is not leaking, keeping your a/c unit tuned up and maintained to run as efficiently as possible,  installing a programmable thermostat into your home and by cleaning your dryer vent.

We repair, maintain a/c units and perform new air conditioning installations: Serving Naples, Bonita Springs, Estero and Fort Myers. Don’t settle for less use RDS!