Posted: May 17, 2021
A properly functioning air conditioning system makes it easy for you to beat the heat. But a slew of problems–from costly repairs to comfort issues to high utility bills— can crop up if you make these five common mistakes.
If you notice that your system is not keeping your home as comfortable as before and your electric bills have increased dramatically, you may be making the biggest mistake of all: failing to have your system serviced on a regular basis. Don’t give your cooling system the cold shoulder!
Over time, dirt and debris build-up inside a system, lowering efficiency. Not only will your home become uncomfortable, but you will also spend a lot more money on electric bills. You also risk a costly repair and the loss of your manufacturer’s equipment warranty, which can be voided if a proper maintenance schedule is not followed.
Be sure to contact us to inspect and service your air conditioning system at least once a year. Now is the time to get this done! On your own, you should change or clean the system’s air filter on a regular basis so your cooling system operates as efficiently as possible.
Don’t make the mistake of leaving any windows and doors open when your air conditioning is running. You’ll force your cooling system 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 allows you to keep your home comfortable at higher room temperatures, saving you money on summer utility bills.
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, For most people, a comfortable temperature ranges between 76-79 degrees. Consider upgrading to a wireless smart thermostat for added convenience and savings.
Don’t block off your outside air conditioning unit with plants, shrubs, or other objects. Make sure there are 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.
Today’s air conditioning systems are far more efficient than systems installed just 12 to 15 years ago. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, even if your cooling system is only 10 years old, you could save 20% to 40% on your air conditioning costs by replacing it with a newer and more efficient model.
You will also avoid the high cost of adding expensive R-22 refrigerant to your aging system. Older cooling systems use this outdated refrigerant, which is no longer manufactured because it’s considered a greenhouse gas that harms the environment when released into the air. New cooling systems use an environmentally-friendly refrigerant to keep you comfortable.
If you’re having problems with your air conditioning system, feel free to contact us to set up a service appointment.
To ward off any unnecessary issues, we recommend adding service plan coverage for your central air conditioning or heat pump system. Read more about our air conditioning plans and check out our coverage for heat pumps.