Indianapolis summers can be warm and humid, so we rely on our air conditioners to get us through the worst of it. But turning the thermostat way down to get your household through a hot spell is going to drive your utility bills way up. In these hard times, who needs another expense like a high electricity bill?

One of the best ways to keep expenses down is, paradoxically, to invest in a new, efficient air conditioner. If yours is 10 years old or more, it’s time to think about it. If your AC is still humming along OK, then for now, try these tips to reduce your summer AC bills:

Install Ceiling Fans

When the fan blades are running counterclockwise, they lift hot air from foot level and push cooled air down the walls so it reaches the room’s occupants. Reverse fan blades in the winter to do the opposite for better heating.

Air-Seal Your Home

You’re losing cool air through minute cracks around windows, doors, and baseboards; through recessed lighting; and around the holes in exterior walls for wires, cables, and pipes. Seal the cracks and holes with caulk, weatherstripping, and insulation.

Have Your Ductwork Checked

Your ducts are probably out of sight in the attic or basement and never get checked to determine if segments are disconnected or if there are cracks and gaps. Holes in ducts can leak conditioned air. If you can’t reach your ducts to examine them, hire an HVAC technician to inspect them and make repairs as needed.

Cover Windows During the Daytime

Solar radiation can keep temperatures high in your home so that you feel the need to turn down the temperature on the thermostat. Cover windows during daytime hours with drapes, blinds, or shades, or install window tint to block the sun.

Turn the Thermostat Up at Night

Whenever nighttime temperatures are cool enough, turn the thermostat up or the A/C off and use a fan or open your windows.

For more on controlling summer AC bills, contact Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing, serving greater Indianapolis.