Summer is here, but even in the hottest season it is possible to keep cool this season and save energy and money along the way. Plug tiny leaks to keep the hot air outside where it belongs. You can save up to 10 percent on energy bills by reducing air leaks. Caulk and weather-strip all seams, cracks, and openings to the outside. Consider using a weather-resistant foam sealant if sealing in a visible place. It resists moisture and can be sanded, painted and stained for a more appealing look. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, air leakage through holes, gaps, and cracks is the single largest cause of residential heating and cooling loss, accounting for approximately 30-50 percent of the energy used in most homes. Reduce heating and cooling costs by up to 20 percent by sealing homes and having insulation added to attics, floors, over crawl spaces, and accessible basement rim joists. Clean or replace air filters so the air conditioning unit does not have to work harder than necessary. Consumers can save $100 a year on energy costs by replacing filters every three months. Install ceiling fans to help spread cool air quickly through the house and can help consumers save $170 over its lifetime. One of the most expensive, yet complicated purchases a homeowner will have to make is buying an HVAC system. Before installing a new HVAC central heating and air system, be sure to consult a professional who can help you determine the right size and type of units, in addition to how to properly maintain a unit. Turn off lights when you leave a room. In low-use areas, such as closets and the outdoors, install motion sensors that turn the lights on only when activated and turn them off automatically. Installing a programmable thermostat takes less than 30 minutes and can save up to $180 a year or up to 20 percent in energy costs when used properly. Studies show that ENERGY STAR qualified window air conditioners save an average of about $45 over the lifetime of the machine. ENERGY STAR qualified ceiling fans with light kits are 50 percent more efficient than conventional fans with lights and can save you more than $170 in energy costs over the fans lifetime. | Read More