How to Help Your Air Conditioner Run More Efficiently

As the hot summer months get closer, you may wonder how to keep your home cool and comfortable without skyrocking your utility bills. The secret lies in using your air conditioning unit better. Follow these 12 simple tips and strategies to keep your air conditioning unit in optimal condition, decrease energy consumption and save money.

1. Leave the Thermostat Alone

Constantly altering the thermostat makes your air conditioner work harder, elevating energy consumption and causing excessive wear and tear. To boost efficiency, set the temperature at a comfortable level—preferably around 78 degrees F (25 degrees C)—when you’re home. Next, refrain from changing it. If you get overheated, remove} a layer of clothing, spray water on your skin or turn on a fan to cool off without changing the temperature.

2. Set the Temperature Back When You’re Away

For optimum savings, set the temperature 7-10 degrees higher than your standard setting for at least eight hours per day. To help you “set it and forget it,” think about setting up a programmable thermostat. This simple upgrade allows you to set temperatures based on your daily routines, automatically modifying the temperature to create a comfortable home when you’re there and saving energy when you’re away.

3. Keep the Curtains Closed

Solar heat gain from direct sunlight forces your cooling system to work more than it normally would. To decrease heat gain, close the curtains over your south- and west-facing windows in the afternoon. Window coverings with light-colored backings are the most effective at reflecting sunlight.

4. Keep the Vents Open

Obstructed or closed air vents throw off your air conditioning system’s supply/return air balance, decreasing efficiency and raising operating costs. To prevent this, keep at least 80 percent of your supply registers open and be sure no return vents are obstructed by curtains, furniture or rugs.

5. Create Airflow with Fans

Utilizing fans in conjunction with your HVAC system circulates cool air more effectively, making your home feel more comfortable while hardly increasing energy consumption. Ceiling fans, in particular, create a wind chill effect that makes the room feel about 4 degrees cooler, enabling you to set the temperature higher without losing comfort.

6. Get Rid of Hot and Humid Air

Cooking and showering create heat and humidity. Run your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans during these activities to decrease your home’s cooling load. In addition, make certain your clothes dryer vents to the outdoors to deter hot, humid air from releasing into your home.

7. Use a Dehumidifier

High humidity levels results in your home feeling cool but clammy, tempting you to decrease the temperature. A dehumidifier takes out excessive moisture, making your home feel cooler and more comfortable while using a lot less electricity than using the air conditioner.

8. Install Your Outdoor AC Unit in the Shade

The outdoor unit’s location influences its performance considerably. Installing it on your home’s north or east side shades it during the hottest part of the day for more effective heat transfer. If the unit gets direct sunlight at the hottest part of the day, consider planting a tree or using a screen to shade it. Just be sure that any plant or structure you add doesn’t impede airflow.

9. Save Your Chores for the Evening

Cooking, laundry and dishwashing cause indoor heat gain, making your HVAC system work harder. Doing these activities at night when temperatures cool down reduces the cooling load during the hottest part of the day and saves energy.

10. Replace the Air Filter

A dirty filter blocks airflow and increases energy consumption, so be sure to exchange it routinely to promote maximum performance. The majority of basic filters should be replaced every 30 to 90 days, but check the manufacturer’s recommendations for the correct replacement schedule for your product.

11. Seal and Insulate the Ductwork

Leaky, uninsulated ducts lose significant amounts of energy, especially if they run through unconditioned spots in your home including the attic, crawl space or garage. Sealing and insulating your ductwork preserves system efficiency and reduces energy expenses.

12. Schedule Preventative AC Maintenance

Scheduled tune-ups are recommended to keep your air conditioning system running successfully. Employ an accredited professional to inspect, clean and service your system every spring. This preventative measure extends your air conditioner’s life span, reduces energy consumption, and allows the technician to uncover and fix potential issues before they become costly problems.

Request Air Conditioning Service in Birmingham

At Norrell Service Experts we pride ourselves on offering comprehensive AC services, which include quality installation, maintenance, repair and replacement in Birmingham. Our customers choose us again and again for our unrivaled knowledge and dedication to customer satisfaction. In fact, we offer a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee on every service we provide! Work with our crew to keep your home cool, comfortable and energy efficient this summer.

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