For Ontario seniors, summer can be a mixed blessing. Sure, it’s a great time for family and friends to get together, enjoy the sunshine and an outdoor cookout (using your natural gas barbecue, of course). But seasonal heat also carries with it the potential for heat exhaustion and air quality concerns.
That’s why keeping cool and comfortable courtesy of central air conditioning (A/C) is the ideal way to beat the heat. And although A/C can result in pricey energy bills for cash-strapped seniors, it doesn’t have to. These energy-conservation tips can help seniors stay cool, conserve energy, and save money:
Insulate Your Home
Well-insulated homes maintain a comfortable temperature (no matter the season) more efficiently – keeping hot, stuffy air out, and cool air in.
Replace Old Equipment
Out-of-date systems are inefficient energy wasters. Update A/C and furnaces for clean, high-efficiency units and consume up to 50 per cent less energy.
There Goes the Sun
Draw your curtains, blinds and close windows. This very effective strategy will keep 80 per cent of the sun’s heat from streaming through your windows.
Air Condition Where You Are
Be selective – shut air registers in rooms you don’t use. This will concentrate your A/C in rooms where you spend most of your time.
Eliminate Heat Generators
Using your dryer, oven, or dishwasher generates heat. Save these jobs for later in the day, when it’s cooler.
Of course, many Ontarians are already saving with clean, affordable and reliable natural gas. Ontario’s switch from coal-fired generation plants has also meant a substantial improvement to air quality – with only about 45 per cent of the emissions vs. coal. Using natural gas-powered public transit vehicles also makes a difference to their communities.
There are many more ways to keep cool in summer. Feel free to give us some tips in the comments below.