Taking The Heat Off Your Wallet

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If you have an air conditioning, odds are you have turned it up within the last few days to beat the heat. Electronic thermostats have made it easy to keep a home’s climate under control, but believe it or not, you may want to hang on to that old manual one.

Jim Dehart works for Comfort Air and as the summer sun heats up, so does his business.

Dehart says you don't have to suffer from a high energy bill this summer, a new thermostat could help. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, a programmable thermostat could end up saving users about $180 a year.

Dehart says if you set it to 78 degrees while you are away, you should be able to start saving. He says it should be bumped up at least seven degrees during the day and four degrees warmer at night.

Prices for a programmable thermostat range anywhere from $80 to $300, but Dehart says it doesn't work for everyone. He says if you are home most of the day then you are better off sticking with a manual thermostat. He says, "there's not a lot of sense in setting the thing back if your just going to the grocery store, it's not worth it."

You don't have to go high-tech to be energy efficient. Another way to cut back on your power bill is to clean and change your filter at least as often as the manufacturer suggests. You should also make sure your AC coils are clean. Not doing either can cause a unit to malfunction.

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