By following these simple AC tune up tips, you can keep your home comfortably cool and still keep your utility bills down during the oppressive heat of summer. The key is to make sure that that your air conditioner is working as efficiently as possible.
Air Conditioning Tips and Tricks: How to Keep Cool
It’s not terribly difficult to keep cool during the sweltering days of summer without receiving a high utility bills. If you have a central conditioning air system, or even a window unit, by following a few tips you can save money and keep cool. Your goal is to make sure that your air conditioner is working as efficiently as possible.
Clean air filters ensure that your air conditioning units will be efficient. A home that has central air may also have a furnace with an air handler. Look for the intake duct near the air handler to find the filter. If the filter is dirty, then it needs to be cleaned or replaced at least once in a 30-day to 90-day period, especially in more extreme weather.
The U.S. Department of Energy recommends changing the air filters in window air conditioning units every month during the cooling season. The filter can easily be found behind the inside facing front cover. Lift off the cover and replace the filter with a disposable filter that is designed for that make and model.
The filters for both central air conditioning units and window units will need to be replaced more frequently if you have pets in your home, because pet fur and dander collects in the filters.
Set Your AC to “AUTO”
For best results, set your thermostat to the “AUTO” setting to keep from running your air conditioner non-stop. This will help reduce the amount of energy needed to run your air conditioner and help your unit run more efficiently. Your air conditioner serves to move the air in your home and remove the moisture from it. When running on the auto setting, your air conditioner will shut off when your home reaches the desired temperature. Additionally, not constantly running your unit will allow for the moisture pulled from the air to evaporate properly rather than be constantly cycled into your home.
Exterior Unit and Condenser Coil Maintenance
In the spring, wash the condenser coil on the outside unit. This needs to be done at least once a year and will ensure that the unit is running at peak efficiency. A dirty condenser coil runs hotter and is less efficient.
You can tell if the condenser is running too hot by checking the copper tube connecting the outside unit to the inside unit. If it is, your air conditioner may need professional service. A technician will also be able to tell if the unit is low on refrigerant.
Window units are often removed in preparation for the winter. When you replace them in the spring, you will want to make sure that the casing is clean, free of debris and running smoothly.
When You’re Away from Home
Always leave the air conditioner on when leaving home, even if you are going on vacation. If you turn the unit off, it will have to work much harder to cool the house when you start it up again. In addition, pets, plants and appliances may suffer if the interior of the house gets too hot.
Instead of turning the unit off, you can be energy efficient by setting the temperature five to ten degrees higher than normal. This will make sure that your home does not get unreasonably warm, causing it to take a long time to cool down later. With the unit on at a higher set temperature, cooling the home when you return should take less than an hour.
Use a Programmable Thermostat
The use of a programmable thermostat can reduce energy use between 5 and 30 percent. To reduce energy costs, you can set the thermostat to a higher setting when you will be out of a room or when you are not as active. Higher thermostat settings at night and when you are at work will save you money.
Smart thermostats are similar to programmable thermostats, but can learn patterns for the desired comfort levels in your home. They allow the family members to program in their own preferences and can be accessed from an app installed on a tablet or smartphone. To maximize efficiency along with personalized comfort, smart thermostats are the wave of the future.
Some Final Thoughts
Do you remember how disruptive it was the last time your air conditioner failed in the middle of a heat wave? Staying cool becomes an obsession that can drain your time, productivity and energy. These easy AC tune up tips can keep your unit running reliably.
When your air conditioning unit needs more extensive attention, you will want to call in an accredited heating and air specialist. American Home Shield can help. When you contact us you know that the professional technician who responds will give you prompt, reliable service. Even when the repairs are extensive, you will only pay the fee listed in your service contract. Now get ready for a relaxed, cool summer.