With the right landscaping design you could save a significant amount of money on your energy bills. According to the Department of Energy, proper landscaping is the best way for homeowners to decrease their carbon footprint and save money, especially in the summer months when we blast our air conditioners. In fact, without a properly placed tree or shrub, we are essentially throwing out money each time we pay our utility bills. Just like we protect our homes against thieves, we should also protect our homes against the sun during the summer months. Here are some ways to reduce your A/C costs with the right landscaping design.
Plant deciduous trees on the south and east sides of your home. During the summer months is when the heat will be pouring through our windows and heating up our homes. With properly placed and planted deciduous trees, the leaves can block out up to 60% of sunlight during the summer months and when the tree loses its leaves during the winter, it can bring the sunlight back to warm the house. You could even plant evergreen trees on the north and west side of the house to protect against the heat from the setting sun.
Plant trees or shrubs to protect against warm winds. During the summer, warm winds can blow directly into our homes. However, with high shrubs or trees, we can create a shield of sorts from the wind, which can significantly reduce the temperatures inside our homes. Moreover, the warm wind that does pass through the tree is effectively cooled, thus providing natural air conditioning, which is basically the equivalent of using 10 electrical air conditioning units.
Vines and trellises provide natural shading. If we plant vines early enough, by the summer time they will reach the proper density to provide the most appropriate shading to protect our homes from the summer heat. The denser the vines the better, but it is important to make sure that it isn’t too heavy, because some species of vine can actually do more harm than good. If your home is made out of lightweight stucco you can find plenty of light vines and trellises that will cover the exterior of your home beautifully.
Cover as much of the front yard and back yard asphalt as you can with grass or some kind of organic turf. Dark asphalt and rocks that cover driveways have been known to absorb heat from the sunlight and reflect it right into our homes. We can save on energy costs by up to 20% by deflecting this heat with grass or some kind of organic ground cover.
If you have a ductless split air conditioning system from FloridaACDealers.com it might be smart to plant some kind of shade providing tree to cover the outdoor portion of the unit, which can make it run much for efficiently. If you have already installed a split ductless unit to increase your efficiency, why not go one step further to make it even more efficient and sustainable. You can be sure to see the results on your next utility bill.