One of the biggest energy drains in the home might just be the HVAC unit. Some homes have a dual heater and air-conditioner that operate via electricity while other homes have a separate gas furnace. Unfortunately, the air conditioner is a major culprit in increasing energy use and heating up costs on energy bills.
Homeowners in need of a new air conditioner might score cool savings by choosing an energy-efficient air conditioner. Just how much does that cool air cost when blowing out of a standard unit? According to ElectricRate, homeowners could be paying more than $4 each night to keep their home cool and around $13 each day. Over 30 days, the price is going to add up considerably, and, when that thermostat nudges down, the price goes up even more.
While the nightly and daily cost may vary depending on the price of electricity, the size of the home and the thermostat, cooling the home isn’t cheap.
Saving with an Energy-Efficient AC
An energy-efficient air conditioner may bear the ENERGY STAR logo. ENERGY STAR actually included a list of the top energy-efficient air conditioners that included the percentage of savings per unit. The savings ranged from 26 percent to more than 50 percent “over federal minimum.”
The savings varied vastly as each model and unit is different. However, choosing an energy-efficient air conditioner could pay for itself after a few years and represent a decent amount of savings over the life of the unit.
Most Energy-Efficient Portable Air Conditioner
Some homeowners might not be on the hunt for a full-sized air conditioner, but they might need a portable air conditioner to keep a room a bit cooler…or maybe the garage. So what’s the most energy-efficient portable air conditioner?
Learn Metrics HVAC Systems ranked the top 12 most efficient portable air conditioners on the market. The number one pick? Whynter ARC-14S Dual-Hose, which costs around $520.
Other Energy-Efficient Portable Air Conditioner Models
Some homeowners might want to spend a little less on their portable air conditioner. There are many other models that are energy-efficient but might be a bit easier on the budget. The following models also were included on the top 12 list from Learn Metrics, and they are among the least expensive on the list.
- Vremi 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner (less than $300)
- SereneLife SLPAC10 10,000 BTU Floor Air Conditioner (a similar one at Home Depot costs less than $400)
The New York Times also compiled a list of recommendations for portable energy-efficient air conditioners. The Times included the Black+Decker BPACT14WT, which retails for less than $500 online.
Most Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner
There might not be just one ‘most energy efficient air conditioner.’ According to ENERGY STAR, several models offer amazing savings. Models that offer a savings (over federal minimum) of 50 percent or more include:
- Fujitsu LZAH1 Series with FGLair® App
- Fujitsu LZAS1 Series with FGLair® App
- Fujitsu RLS3 Series with IntesisHome® App
- Fujitsu RLS3H Series with IntesisHome® App
- Lennox SL28XCV Series
- Lennox XC25 Series with iComfort Wi-Fi® Control
- Mitsubishi FH Series models with Kumo Cloud Controller
For each brand, savings may vary per model number related to capacity and other mechanics. Check ENERGY STAR’s full list and data sheet for exact savings and details.
Best Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner
There are many portable and central air conditioners available on the market. The best one for each homeowner, however, may differ. Budget, climate, lifestyle and the size of the home may determine which air conditioner is the best.
A new central air conditioner can cost between $3,811 to more than $7,000 according to Home Advisor.
The average price is $5,750. For many homeowners this is quite an investment. The site also notes that some units may soar to up to $11,000.
Choosing an energy-efficient air conditioner might be a higher investment up front. However, over the life of the unit, homeowners could see a decent amount of savings. In addition, rebates could be available from local energy providers.
Finding Rebates for an Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner
Homeowners looking to offset the initial cost of their new energy-efficient air conditioner may be eligible for rebates from a local utility company. To inquire about rebates available in the area, contact the electricity provider.
Homeowners also may be able to find rebates by using HomeSelfe. The app also could help them find other hidden energy drains in their home to further decrease energy use and save money each month.
Decreasing Energy Costs Without an Energy-Efficient Air Conditioner
Homeowners who aren’t in need of replacing their current HVAC unit can still take steps to lower the unit’s impact on energy costs. During the heat of the summer, turn up the thermostat to around 78 degrees. This keeps the home cool but not too cool. When homeowners leave for work, they may adjust the thermostat even more.
Once a year, homeowners can have a professional inspect their HVAC unit to find any issues that could affect its life or efficiency. And, of course, homeowners should change the air filter regularly.
While an energy-efficient air conditioner could provide cooler savings over time, even making little changes to an air conditioning unit can help homeowners save energy and save money, too!