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Top Mistakes Homeowners Make with Their Air Conditioner—Part 2

Closing the windows

Posted: July 17, 2018

In our previous post, we discussed a few of the problems that can occur when you make mistakes with your air conditioning system. Here are a few more missteps to avoid.

Overworking your system

Don’t make the mistake of leaving any windows and doors open when your air conditioning is running. You will force your a/c unit to work harder to keep you comfortable. You should also limit your use of exhaust fans in the kitchen or bathroom. Running these fans will pull cool air out of your house.

Something you should do is to run ceiling fans when your air conditioning system is on. This will move cool air more efficiently around your home, creating a wind chill effect. (Air movement evaporates moisture on the skin and makes you feel cooler in the summer.) Using ceiling fans allow you to keep your home comfortable at higher room temperatures.

Trying to cool off too fast

Some people turn off their cooling system when everyone leaves the house for the day. When they get back home, especially on a hot day, they will turn the thermostat as low as possible to speed up the cooling process.

But this won’t cool your house any faster! It just keeps your system working longer than necessary and will cost you money, especially if you forgot to reset the thermostat to an energy-saver mode.

The best advice is to program your thermostat at a set level; the “sweet spot” for most people is 76-79 degrees. The setting is important because studies have shown that every degree represents a difference of about seven percent in power consumption. So keeping your thermostat just a little higher can make a difference in your electric bills.

You should also consider upgrading to a wireless smart thermostat. This lets you view and change temperature settings, check indoor humidity levels and more, all from your smartphone, PC or tablet device. You can even receive alerts when you’re away from home to let you know if there is a sudden or drastic change in temperature or humidity that could indicate a breakdown.

Obstructing your system

Don’t block off your outside air conditioning unit with plants, shrubs or other objects. Make sure there is 18-30 inches of clear space around the unit to allow it to “breathe.” This helps it run more efficiently. Don’t stack anything on top of the unit either, like garden hoses or landscaping tools and products. When mowing the lawn, position the mower away from the unit. This will help you prevent grass clippings and other debris from getting blown into your system and reducing its efficiency.

If you’re having problems with your air conditioning system, feel free to contact us to set up an appointment.