Residential electricity use rises and falls seasonally at greater levels than commercial or industrial use, mostly because of air conditioning in the summer, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
Nearly 90% of U.S. homes have some type of air conditioning, such as central units and window, wall or portable units. Other items that impact residential electricity in the summer includes using fans, dehumidifiers and pool pumps.
Home electricity consumption usually peaks in July and August “when temperatures and cooling demand are the highest,” according to the EIA. About “18% of annual household electricity use if for air conditioning.” Nearly 75% of “all air-conditioned homes use central equipment, but individual air-conditioning units are more common in the cold/very cold climate region in the northern United States and the marine climate region along the West Coast.”
“Nationwide, 87% of homes use fans, which are equally common in homes with and without air conditioning,” according to the EIA. “Ceiling fans are most common in single-family homes, while floor, table and window fans are more common in mobile homes.” Dehumidifiers are used in 15% of homes with air conditioning. Evaporative coolers are in 2% of U.S. homes, most commonly in the Southwest.
About 7% of homes use equipment to maintain private pools, “but pool pumps alone can use thousands of kilowatt hours each year,” according to the EIA. In 2016, an average residential customer used 11,000 kilowatt hours. Nearly one-third of home pools are heated. “Natural gas is the most common fuel used to heat pools in the United States, and only 9% of homes with swimming pools are heated with electricity.”