It is absolutely essential to have a well-maintained and efficient air conditioner during the hot summer months. Without it, your house could end up being a hot, sweltering, and very uncomfortable place to be. There are some common mistakes that you need to avoid so that this does not happen to you and your family. Otherwise, you could end up with increased energy bills, a reduction in your air conditioner’s efficiency, unnecessary repairs, and a shortened lifespan of your unit.
The following are eight mistakes you will want to avoid making in order to ensure that your air conditioner can keep your home at a comfortable temperature all summer.
1. Not Having the Right Size Air Conditioner
Air conditioner units need to be the right size to cool down your residence efficiently. This is especially important when you are renovating your house or buying a new AC unit. If you buy an air conditioning system that is for a smaller space than what you have, then it will need to work too hard in order to cool down the air, struggle to meet the thermostat’s demands, and wear out faster. If your air conditioner is rated for a bigger space than what you have, it will turn off and on constantly and grow undependable and wear out over time. Make sure to choose the right-sized AC unit for your property to avoid these problems.
2. Not Cleaning the Coils and Fins
The coils and fins of an air conditioner help the condenser on the outside of the home and the evaporator on the inside absorb heat and release it. This process of transporting heat is critical. However, it may become impeded if there are layers of grime and dust. If you never clean the coils, grime can build up. This will decrease efficiency and increase your energy bills. You should clean the fins and coils in the spring ahead of the summer season. Be sure to check them occasionally after high winds or storms to ensure the fins and coils stay clean and unencumbered.
3. Not Cleaning or Replacing the Air Filter
The air filter in your air conditioner helps to remove allergens, dust, and other debris from the air as it is passing through the system. Typically, air filters are made of wire and light cardboard and designed to be replaced or cleaned on a regular basis. After about six months, the air filter will be full of dirt. This will make it tough for the air to pass through, and your air conditioner will not be able to do its job effectively any longer. This increases the amount of dust in your house and significantly decreases airflow as well as the AC unit’s efficiency. Simply replacing or cleaning a dirty air filter can improve your system’s energy usage by 5% to 15%. So, make sure to replace or clean the filter once a month or so, and be sure to check it after especially dusty or dirty activities, like after demolition or a remodeling project.
4. Not Setting or Updating the Thermostat
It is essential to have a programmable thermostat these days, especially with rising energy costs. A programmable thermostat enables you to set the temperature for different times of the day and night. This will help you to save money on your energy bills, and you will not need to constantly adjust the settings manually. Therefore, investing in an advanced smart thermostat is a good idea. Many of them even allow you to change the temperature in your home by using an app. So, if you do not have a smart or programmable thermostat, you should strongly consider an upgrade. Simply upgrading your thermostat can provide you with more accurate cooling and save you money in the long run.
5. Turning the Temperature Too Low
Many homeowners make this common mistake because they do not understand how their air conditioning systems actually work. Some people will turn down their thermostats very low, hoping that this will make the air conditioner either work harder or respond faster. However, that is not how things work. An air conditioning system has to work just as hard to reduce the temperature by a few degrees as it does to reduce it by 20 degrees. So, you should program the thermostat to the exact temperature you want instead of lower than what you need. Setting the thermostat too low will just result in higher energy bills.
6. Running the AC When Nobody Is Home
When you are setting up schedules for your thermostat, consider when people are actually at home. For example, during the middle of the week, all of the members of your household might be at school or work. If so, then you can raise the temperature significantly to help you save money on your energy bills. During the middle of the night is another time where you can raise the temperature since everyone will be asleep. Do not set your air conditioner temperature too low when no one is around to enjoy the cool air. This will simply increase your energy bills and add unnecessary wear and tear to your air conditioning system.
7. Neglecting Your Windows
A great deal of heat can enter your house through the windows, especially when they are open. If you would like to control the heat inside of your residence, it is important to pay close attention to your windows. Keep the windows closed while you are running your air conditioner. Cover them with drapes or blinds during the hottest times of the day, especially those windows that face the sun. At night, if possible, open up your windows to allow naturally cool air into your home. The less work that your air conditioner needs to do, the better!
8. Failing to Schedule Regular Tune-Ups and Maintenance
Many people take their air conditioners for granted when they appear to be doing a good job at keeping their homes cool. However, just like your car and other complex machines, your air conditioning system needs a check-up and maintenance on a regular basis to keep it running efficiently and at peak performance. When you fail to keep it maintained properly, your air conditioner will tend to break down more often and have a shorter lifespan. It will also struggle to maintain a consistent temperature or work efficiently, which can result in higher energy bills. It is important to schedule a tune-up at least once a year before the hot summer season. A professional can also help you to determine when it is time to replace your AC unit.
Reliable Professional Services
Residents of Baltimore County, Carroll County, and Howard County in Maryland can rely on Air, Plumbing & Heating Solutions to handle all of their cooling, heating, and plumbing needs. This includes repair, maintenance, installation, and replacement services. Contact Air, Plumbing & Heating Solutions today for more information about our professional services.