Reduce Energy Bill With Landscaping

Reduce Energy Bill With Landscaping

Air Conditioning Repair in Katy

Energy Efficiency and Smart Landscaping

With spring approaching the planting season is just around the corner. This year, provide your home with the shady assistance of nature to help keep it cool. By planting trees, shrubs and plants you can take advantage of the cooling nature of shade.

Shade for your central air conditioner can reduce its energy use by as much as 50%. The best shade is from nearby trees as plants too close to the air conditioner will result in impaired performance and a shortened service life.


Did you know that it can be 20 degrees cooler in the shade than in the sun? Trees shade the homes roof from the hot summer sun. If you have trees providing shade and are thinking of having them cut, consider otherwise unless the tree is dead, dying or can cause potential damage to foundations, septic tanks, water or other utility lines. A good trim to rid a tree of dead branches and limbs may be all it needs. A tree surgeon can inspect your tree and determine if it is indeed dying and needs to be cut.

Trees are slow growing, and once a tree is gone, it can take a very long time to replace it with one of equal shade. Sometimes there simply is no help for a diseased tree, and when that occurs it must be cut of course. If you simply don’t like trees near your home plant them further away where the shade they will eventually provide will help cool your home. The added benefit of planting trees is that they help to reduce your household’s carbon footprint with every single tree that you plant.

Deciduous trees will provide shade in the summer, but allows sunlight to enter for warming in the winter as it drops its leaves. Planting too closely to the house can cause damage to the homes foundation. Tall mature trees with broad canopies are the best choice for the homes south and west side as they will eventually shade the roof.

Never plant trees near septic tanks, water or gas lines or electrical power lines to avoid damage.


Shrubs can cool a home’s walls and grow much faster than trees. As some varieties grow faster than others you will want to consider growth rate when shopping. Remember not to plant to close to walls as the roots need room to grow and damage may occur to foundations.

Windows and Glass

Windows, un-insulated walls and glass doors allow the sun’s radiant heat to enter the home. Roofs absorb the suns heat, and the darker the roof is, the more heat it will absorb. Shade will reduce the amount of heat entering into your home.

For those windows where you want to maintain a view, or where plantings are not possible, UV filtering window film is an option for reducing cooling costs. Window film can be installed on glass reducing Ultra Violet (UV) light by up to 99% and is very effective in reducing the heat that enters through glass while retaining the view. Some window films are so very energy efficient that it is the equivalent of adding an extra pane of glass in terms of insulating qualities, as well as reducing UV light, heat and the damage it can cause such as the fading of upholstery.

If you have ever walked barefoot on bare soil and hardscape you know how it heats up in the summer sun. Grass and plants keep the soil cool and assist in reducing the heat surrounding your home. A good rule to remember when you are choosing siding, outdoor furniture and canopies is that white and light reflects sunlight while black and dark absorbs it. Attic insulation is one of the two best defenses against heat gain from a dark colored roof. The next best defense is attic ventilation which helps to cool the home by moving heat out of the attic.

The final tool in defeating attic heat is ceramic coatings which reflects high heat and UV rays and is applied like paint to a roof.

When planning landscaping remember do not plant trees near a septic tank, water or gas lines, or other utilities. As a general rule, do not plant trees within 50 ft. of a septic tank.

Plants should not be planted any closer than 2 ft. from the home’s foundation to allow for plant growth as well as air circulation between plant and home. Some plants need to be further than 2 ft. to allow for growth and prevent it from contacting walls. Use the fully mature size to determine how far plantings should be from the home. If you have especially fertile soil and plants tend to grow larger than expected take this into consideration when gauging a location to plant.

Take the time to determine which plants grow best in your area to reduce the likelihood of poor growth and the need to replant each year.

Using nature to assist in cooling your home is smart landscaping will help to keep it comfortable in the summer while reducing the workload of the air conditioner and increasing energy efficiency, and in the process you will have a much more beautiful lawn.

Cypress Heating and Air Conditioning is available 24 hours a day and seven days a week. That’s because we understand failures in heating and cooling seldom occur at a convenient time. Our certified and experienced HVAC technicians truly care about your comfort. When you need heating and air conditioning installation, service or heating and air conditioning repair in Katy, give our dedicated experts a call, we will be happy to take care of your problem promptly.