Summers seem to be getting hotter every year, and we are going to need our AC units to be in great shape to keep us cool throughout those sweltering months.
So what can you do to ensure a comfortable summer for you and your family? Here are some tips that will cool your home the entire time, and efficiently at that.
Perform preventative AC maintenance before summer starts
If there’s one thing you need to prevent from happening in the middle of summer, it would have to be an air conditioner breakdown. The best way of keeping that from happening is to get an AC tune up done before the summer months come. Contact a licensed, bonded, and insured HVAC professional for this task, and you can expect your central air conditioning unit to be fully inspected, cleaned, and ready for the summer.
Check and clean the filter
If your AC unit has been tuned up a month or so earlier but you have already used it since then, it’s always best to check the filter. Air conditioning breakdowns happen because of something as simple as a dirty air filter. They can also lead to higher energy bills as dirt forces the blower fan and cooling system work harder, which uses up more power.
During the summer, clean or change your filter at least once a month. Since taking out and cleaning the filter is easy to do, and you don’t have to hire an HVAC professional to do it for you.
Improve home insulation
You’re paying good money to cool the air inside your home, but if your home has poor insulation, all that cooled air will easily escape and end up wasted. Worse, your AC unit will also have to work harder—and therefore use more energy—to continue doing its job.
So if you have the time and the budget, do what you can to plug gaps and holes in your house wherever you can find them and insulate your windows and doors. If you want to do a whole house insulation, get a professional to perform an audit on your home to determine its insulation requirements.
Keep your AC in the shade
It would be really great if your AC unit was installed in a shaded area of your home because the air there will be cooler, which means the unit will have a much easier time cooling your place. If it wasn’t, then you may have to build a shade for your unit to make it more efficient.
Don’t let the sun shine on your thermostat
Avoid placing your thermostat in a place where direct sunlight might hit it. That’s because your thermostat might interpret the heat as a sign that the AC unit is not adequately cooling the room, and will let it run longer than necessary. You also need to keep the thermostat away from appliances that produce heat such as refrigerators, LED TVs, and lamps.
Use a ceiling fan
When the AC is running and you feel like turning the thermostat down because you still feel hot, don’t. Turning down the temperature is going to cost you a lot more in energy usage. What you need to do is improve airflow inside your home, and this is something you can achieve with the help of a ceiling fan. By using a ceiling fan strategically, you should be able to gain better control over the cooling of your home.
In the summer, set your ceiling fan to run counterclockwise. This is going to push cool air down, right into the spots where you and your family spend most of your time.
Do your cooking outside
On scorching days, you might want to avoid using the oven or the stove because cooking indoors will contribute to heat buildup and make your AC unit work harder to keep everyone cool. If you have a grill or a fire pit, why not do your cooking outside? But if you think it’s too hot out, maybe you can cook using only the microwave oven, which doesn’t generate heat.
Follow the above tips, and you’ll enjoy a very cool and energy-efficient summer at the same time!
About The Author
Rebecca Anderson is the Content Marketing Strategist of FH Air, a heating and cooling repair and service company that has been serving the Phoenix Valley since 1974. On her spare time, she enjoys reading books and mountaineering with her family and friends.
Thanks for pointing out that the best way to avoid your cooling system breaking down in the middle of summer is to get an AC tune up done before the summer months come. My husband and I are thinking about having anew AC system installed because our old one broke last summer and we just ignored it since it was starting to get cooler. I think it would be smart to make sure that we are getting regular maintenance done on the new one so that it can last longer and keep us cool when we really need it.