The Average Cost for Home Air Conditioning

According to the Los Angeles Times, in 2009 the average American household kept the thermostat set for 72 degrees in the summertime.

American Electricity Costs

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At 72 degrees an air conditioning unit that runs for 10 hours can expect to run up a daily tab of about $6. 24.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, in 2007 the typical American household used 936 kilowatthours (kWh) each month. The average American electricity costs are 12 cents per kilowatthour.

Calculating Your Air Conditioning Usage

To calculate your daily air conditioning cost, find two numbers on your outdoor condensing: the amps and the volts. Multiply these numbers together to get the total number of watts you use and then multiply this number with the number of hours you use your air conditioner to get your total daily usage. By multiplying this number with your local electricity rate you will get a daily total cost.

Improving Efficiency

According to the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy you can make the most of your current air conditioner by changing the air filters on a monthly basis. You also should have a technician inspect, clean and tune your unit every three to five years.

Reducing Costs

According to Southern California Edison, a family can save up to 3 percent of the cooling portion of their energy bill on a monthly basis by simply raising the thermostat by one degree. To help keep the home cool, close curtains on the east and west sides of the house to prevent direct sunlight.


There are several inexpensive alternatives to running the air conditioning throughout the day. Crack your windows in the evening time and turn on your ceiling fan to keep a cool breeze circulating through the house.