When it comes to summertime, your air conditioner is your best friend. Depending on the climate you live in or just your personal preference, that relationship can continue all year long. That’s why it’s important to make sure that your AC is not only up to snuff, but that it’s also not crushing your monthly electric bills. Here are some tips to keep in mind as you seek to keep your air conditioner or HVAC system running through the heat and humidity.
Routine maintenance is key.
In order to really get the most out of your AC, you need to take on some routine tasks as a homeowner. After all, running your air conditioning throughout the summer can increase your electricity costs. While you may anticipate extra expenses for that energy usage, you could notice that you aren’t getting the cold air you’re seeking. This is where you can help as a homeowner by regularly cleaning or replacing your air filters. These filters can become caked with dust and other allergens over time that not only preventing cool air from spreading throughout your house but also negatively impacting your indoor air quality.
It’s recommended that you bring in a licensed HVAC technician annually to take a look at your vents to check for any blockages. This blockage could be forcing you to crank the thermostat lower, putting more wear and tear on your air conditioner than you ever realized. Regular maintenance and cleaning of your household can also ensure greater indoor air. Teamed up with proper ventilation from windows and doors, you can actually help reduce your energy bill, relying on the AC unit when a nice, cool breeze doesn’t do the trick.
Be sure to inspect the ducts and coils.
As mentioned before, bringing in a technician to regularly assess your home’s air conditioning or HVAC system is in your best interest. This is the best way to have the machinery evaluated so that it’s ready to handle use at peak times, like during those sweltering summer days. Ductwork may easily develop leaks through cracks in the equipment. The air will have to run at an increased rate to make up for the air escaping through the holes. A technician can help you avoid that high electric bill by replacing the ducts on your AC system, or patching the existing ones.
The coils are an essential part of an air conditioner’s condenser, working to absorb heat. However, if this mechanism is caked in dirt and gunk, it’s not able to function properly. Cleaning and replacing these coils as necessary will help reduce energy costs. If you notice any noises emanating from your air conditioning that just isn’t going away, machinery within the system could become loose, rusting over, or simply breaking down, requiring replacement before a more significantly costly repair or replacement.
Make use of your thermostat.
One of the greatest teams to save energy on your air conditioning is pairing Energy Star-grade units with energy-efficient thermostats. This will make sure that AC efficiency is paramount, while also limiting energy consumption to suit the needs of your entire house. Along with an Energy Star HVAC or even window unit, a remote or programmable thermostat can allow a homeowner to save on their cooling costs by adjusting the temperature settings on the AC system to meet certain standards to trigger the unit on and off.
Smart thermostats have taken things a step further. Connected to a home’s Wi-Fi, these thermostats can turn on an air conditioner with the use of an app on your smartphone. This will allow you to turn on your AC as you are driving home to arrive in a cooler house, rather than leaving the air conditioning running all day long. After all, you want to keep cool, but you also don’t want to waste too much energy.