At maximum power, an air conditioning unit can cost as much as $1.50 per hour. Imagine running an office space for eight hours a day in the middle of summer with 50 air-conditioned rooms! Running constantly at peak capacity, those 50 rooms will cost $600—per day! That's a massive $54,000 bill for just running an air conditioner during summer. Granted, you likely won't be using it at anywhere near its maximum power for most of the summer, but the cost to a large company is significant. Fortunately, though, there are several ways to save your bank account (and the environment) from catastrophe.
1. Set the thermostat at a sensible temperature
This might sound obvious, but there is no point going to maximum power for no reason. It's one thing if you're trying to keep the server room chilly, but there's no point making rooms so cool during a summer day that you or your employees begin to shiver.
2. Close windows and doors
Another obvious one, but sometimes it's the most obvious things that tend to get overlooked the most. Keeping doors and windows sealed works for the same reason that it works for heaters; namely, the air is contained when it reaches a window or door. Shading your condenser and windows can also help alleviate loss of cooling efficiency.
3. Use a zoning system
Like mentioned previously, there are certain circumstances that require different cooling levels for different rooms. You shouldn't have every room chilled to the core just because the server room needs to stay cool. Investing in a zoning system means that you can partition your air conditioning units easily and effectively, saving you time and money. You don't need to run a company for this to pay off, either, as large houses that only have a few rooms that need to be cooled can benefit greatly from a zoning system.
4. Keep your unit clean
Your air conditioning unit contains a filter. If you have an air conditioning unit at floor level—for example, a patio—debris can easily be blown into filters and grills. Be sure to diligently check all of your units on a regular basis. Some units might even require disassembly to clean. If you've had an air conditioning unit for a while and you've never removed it, now is the time to pull it out, clean it, dry it, and watch the power usage go down (as well as the temperature).