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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Save $$$ with these air conditioning tips.

Every little bit helps, so here's a few things to keep in mind:

  • One of the most important tips is to change your air filter once a month, or sooner if necessary. I discuss this in more detail in an earlier blog post: click here to view air filter blog. This is important to ensure that your family is breathing clean air, and that your system is not being overworked or damaged.
  • Turn on your ceiling fans in the summertime to help stay cooler. Make sure that your fans are spinning in the correct direction. During the summer, the fans should be put on “forward”.  In this mode, the fan blades should be spinning in a counter-clockwise direction. On the base of the fan, there should be a switch that reverses the direction.
  • Do not let the inside of your house get uncomfortably hot. The air conditioner cannot cool it down in a reasonable amount of time. AC systems are designed to supply about 20° of cooling, so 100° air would only be brought down to about 80°. 
  • It is not unheard of for an ac system to freeze up. If this happens to you, turn off the system promptly and place the FAN switch on "On". The ice will slowly begin to melt. Place some towels and or bowls under the unit as some of the water may drip under the unit. You can then call a professional. The technician will not have to return to your home, as the ice has already melted by the time they get there.
  • A system check-up can save you money by exposing potential problems with the system before they become major problems. Another way to help prevent problems is through a Preventative Maintenance Agreement.
  • Help prevent heat from entering your home by using drapes, blinds or tinting. Especially on the sides of the house which face the sun. For instance, in the morning you will want to close the east facing blinds. Then in the afternoon, you will want to close the west facing blinds. Keep in mind that using light colored shades can help reflect the heat causing light. Doing this will help you save money over time.
  • The outside unit can benefit from shade, so feel free to plant trees and bushes near to it. Keep in mind that the unit needs to be able to flow air freely, so you do not want to restrict it from doing so. Proper shade of an air conditioning system can increase efficiency by nearly 10%. You also never want to block access to the unit for repair people.
  • Be aware of heat producing appliances and lighting. Most appliances in the home produce heat as a byproduct. To make sure your ac system is working properly, never place heat producing appliances or strong lights near the Thermostat. This can give the system false temperature readings, and affect the efficiency of the system. The thermostast would then think it is hotter than it really is, and waste energy trying to cool unneccessarily.
I hope these tips give you a better understanding of how to save money. Some are simple, but all are very important to know if saving money is a top priority. Thanks for your time, and take care for now.