Thank goodness for air conditioners that keep you cool all summer and comfortable all year! You should count your lucky stars, for your year-round comfort is a luxury not everyone is afforded!
However, at what cost do your luxuries come? Is all that comfort at the expense of the environment really worth it?
It really gets you thinking, doesn’t it? You might not get that restful sleep after all.
Learn more about your air conditioning system’s environmental impact below.
How Is My Air Conditioner Affecting the Environment?
That’s a question not too many homeowners ask enough, especially when they reside in colder areas.
Air conditioners emit Carbon Dioxide (CO2) and are some of the largest contributors to greenhouse gases! Air conditioning annually produces 1950 million tons of CO2!
It is surreal to learn that your air conditioner is responsible for a staggering 3.94% of the world’s yearly greenhouse gas emissions.
Are you still comfortable, or is that chill down your spine caused by more than just your AC unit?
Sit tight, and don’t touch that dial on your thermostat. We’re just getting started!
How Big of a Carbon Footprint Does My Home Cooling System Have?
There’s no way of generalizing the answer to this question. However, we can help paint a picture with some nationwide averages.
Air conditioning systems consume 7% of all electricity consumption in the United States. Seven percent doesn’t seem like a staggering percentage.
You might be surprised or jolted to learn that seven percent is equivalent to roughly $30 billion! Homeowners collectively pay an annual sum of thirty billion dollars to keep cool against erratic climate change and unpredictable heat waves.
A 1.4-ton air conditioner can emit up to 5.8 kilograms of carbon daily! Imagine keeping it on all day, every day.
Luckily, not everyone likes lower temperatures! Even fewer residents who live in naturally cooler environments use air conditioners. Still, that doesn’t eradicate AC usage statewide.
No matter how cold it is in Washington, some homes still have AC installations. There’s no shame in needing supplemental cooling, especially during these erratic temperature spikes.
However, if you must stay cool, we should all do our best to ensure our environment stays cool too. That hole in the ozone layer isn’t getting any smaller after all.
What’s a Sustainable Air Conditioning System for Mount Vernon, Washington?
The frequency of usage isn’t the only determining factor of sustainability. Some of us just aren’t aware of how sustainability may vastly differ among AC types, units, and brands.
Only a few of us know more about sustainability. If only we knew more about our different appliances! We might be able to do more than read about our various carbon footprints.
Don’t worry because you are not alone. In fact, educating the Washington public about greener solutions is a primary goal for the state government.
Washington Legislature plans to collectively neutralize, if not eradicate, the state’s GHG emissions. According to the Washington State Department of Ecology’s Climate Commitment Act (CCA), the state aims to be carbon-neutral by 2050.
Washington is taking measures to enact helpful state ordinances toward finding eco-friendly alternatives and solutions. The local government is promoting greener heating and cooling technology in line with these goals!
Are All Air Conditioners Energy Efficient?
Sometimes, you can use a more innovative and efficient air conditioner all day, and its carbon emissions still won’t compare to the hourly usage of an older AC model.
There is hope for tomorrow yet, thanks to Washington’s environmental efforts! Residents now have more access to learning about and acquiring sustainable appliances.
We have compiled some tips with various HVAC products and services to help you live greener and sleep sounder. After all, reducing our collective carbon footprint is a goal we can all get behind.
The Most Eco-Friendly Air Conditioners
Environmentally friendly air conditioning exists and is within every homeowner’s reach. You don’t have to give up heating and cooling to clear your conscience.
Like chocolate, there are guilt-free options! Below are two of the most sustainable HVAC systems to help you and the environment stay cooler than the other side of the pillow.
- Solar-powered air conditioners: Using sunlight instead of electricity can greatly reduce your home’s carbon emissions. While it doesn’t eradicate your air conditioner’s CO2 emissions, reducing its energy consumption is the next best thing.
Solar-powered AC units aren’t necessarily a type of air conditioner. Solar power is merely an alternative power source. Solar panels may be integrated into AC units to remove their dependency on electrical power.
- Geothermal HVAC systems: Like solar power, geothermal energy can replace harmful energy consumption. Geothermal systems utilize natural resources to alter temperatures and distribute your home’s heating and cooling.
Unlike solar integration, geothermal HVAC systems are actual stand-alone units. A ground-source heat pump uses geothermal technology to either heat or cool your home. A Geothermal Heat Pump makes the most efficient home heating and cooling system.
Why Are Some Air Conditioning Systems More Sustainable Than Others?
Conventional air conditioners are only half as efficient or reliable as later models. Some air conditioners just deliver sustainability better than others.
Older AC models do not have the same innovative qualities to give homeowners better efficiency and reliability. Traditional HVAC systems stick to conventional outfits to keep unit prices at bay.
With rising utility and energy costs, paying an upfront fee once might help you save more in the long run. What you pay in upfront costs, you save in energy consumption.
It’s only fair to pay more for newer AC installations to acquire their premier-class upgrades. You should consider these innovative solutions an investment rather than an unnecessary expense.
How You Can Tell If Your Air Conditioner Is Environmentally Friendly
The general rule of thumb is newer AC models manufactured from 2015 onwards are more energy-efficient.
HVAC manufacturers started coming out with new units boasting increased efficiency in 1993. AC units made in the 90s are more efficient than their counterparts from the 30s, that’s for sure.
Fun Fact: Air conditioning systems were invented, patented, and released in 1932 by none other than H.H. Schultz!
However, like most innovative technology that came out decades ago, 90s energy-efficient air conditioners pale in comparison to today’s latest innovations.
Air conditioners manufactured from 1993 to 2005 have an average SEER rating of 10 to 12. Today’s air conditioners boast SEER ratings ranging from 14 to 20!
What are SEER Ratings?
Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) ratings define how efficiently an air conditioner can lower indoor temperatures.
SEER ratings represent how much money an air conditioner might cost you for energy consumption each year.
The higher the SEER ratings are, the less energy your air conditioner needs to lower temperatures.
SEER ratings are certainly helpful in gauging AC efficiency. Still, SEER ratings are only estimates that showcase your AC’s potential. SEER ratings can plummet without proper maintenance and upkeep.
Don’t worry! You may sustain or even enhance your AC’s efficiency!
How to Sustain AC Efficiency And All-Around Sustainability
Energy efficiency heavily relies on the stability of your air conditioner. Well-maintained AC systems with lower SEER ratings can produce more efficient cooling than neglected innovative systems.
If you want efficiency, keep up with routine maintenance and tune-ups! It will make your AC systems more efficient and produce better-quality cooling.
Follow these maintenance tips to reduce your home’s carbon footprint today!
- Opt for AC systems with higher SEER ratings.
- Choose reliable HVAC contractors for proper installation and routine maintenance.
- Open ventilation systems frequently to let “old air” out and fresh air into your home.
- Minimize indoor pollutants such as smoking, vaping, spraying air fresheners, or lighting incense and candles.
- Keep your furry friends outdoors to avoid their hair clusters blocking air vents.
- Replace air filters regularly to avoid clog-causing contamination buildup that impacts your AC’s performance.
- Keep up with yearly tune-ups to benefit your older AC systems.
- Replace your old and worn-out air conditioner for more efficient cooling.
- Opt for HVAC systems with programmable thermostats to automate temperature alterations.
- Only trust reputable HVAC contractors to handle your air conditioners.
Routine Maintenance & Tune-Ups
Most homeowners can’t appreciate the value knowledgeable HVAC contractors bring to the table. We hesitate to trust “professionals” because we have all heard the same horror stories about technicians pulling a fast one.
However, there are helpful contractors we can trust out there. Some of them are even knowledgeable in these kinds of topics.
Besides comprehensive skill training, most reputable technicians are versed in environmental consciousness. In line with different “green” laws, most companies provide their employees with access to various environmental studies!
Optimizing efficiency isn’t the only thing licensed professionals can do for homeowners. Finding a reputable contractor makes all the difference, especially when they share your environmentalist values!
Are You Looking for Reliable AC Repair, Replacement, and Maintenance in Mount Vernon, WA?
CPI Plumbing & Heating prioritizes competency, professionalism, and integrity.
Our HVAC technicians won’t only help you find more sustainable AC solutions, but we’ll make sure they stay that way for a long time! At CPI, we value client satisfaction and safety.
We put in the leg work to reduce your home’s carbon footprint. We conduct reliable AC repairs, replacements, and maintenance services geared toward a greener tomorrow.