Now that summer is here, everyone is seeking out the best air conditioning tips to help them stay cool when the temperatures rise. Well, here’s your first big tip from your friends at Bradley Mechanical: Make sure your air conditioner is ready for the start of the cooling season.
And the best way to do that is to take some precautionary steps towards auditing your equipment and helping it work safer and more efficiently when those dog days of summer are barking the loudest. The last thing you want is for your air conditioner to break down when you need it most and prepping it ahead of its busiest time of the year can ensure that your system is fully operational at all times.
Many homeowners don’t even realize their HVAC unit has an air filter that needs replacing. Unfortunately, some of them come to discover it exists far too late, like when their unit has shut down and won’t start back up.
The air filter is an essential component of an air conditioner because it works to filter out all of the airborne hazards and contaminants so they don’t get recirculated in the home. But when your air filter is dirty and clogged, that can make it much harder for the air conditioner to work properly. Air flow is imperative to any air conditioner and without it, the system takes longer to cool the interior of your home.
When the system runs longer and works harder, it puts more stress and strain on the equipment allowing it to break down quicker and more frequently. Repairing your unit is a lot more expensive than buying air filter replacements.
As for changing the filter, do it every two to three months based on the degree of usage and the amount of contaminants that need to be filtered out. Homes with pets may want to do this more often than those without due to the amount of fur and dander that can find their way into a filter.
Go outside and take a look at your compressor or other outdoor components. Be sure there is no debris, trash, or unkempt landscaping blocking the equipment or hindering air flow. When the air can’t get into the outdoor unit of your system, you’re just asking for trouble.
Anything that’s in the way should be cleared out entirely. This includes tree branches, overgrown shrubbery, and any fallen detritus that may be lying around.
Windows that get direct sunlight on them when the sun is at its peak are going to let in a lot of heat. That can make your air conditioner work overtime. There’s no need for that to happen, not if you’re smart about choosing the right window coverings and using them at the most opportune times. Installing heavy curtains and thick shades can prevent the heat from getting in, making it cooler and preventing the AC from working longer than need be.