Springtime is officially here, and for Florida residents that means soaring temperatures—the concept of “cool” weather is really lost on homeowners around here, so addressing our cooling needs now is always a good option. Let’s face it, we use our air conditioners on a fairly regular basis, right? Hopefully, you’ve invested in maintenance already—maintenance allows our technicians to fully inspect, clean, and adjust components that need it. This ensures your air conditioner works as effectively and efficiently as possible for as long as possible.
Maintenance each and every year (or every six months if you have a heat pump system) is the best way to ensure that your air conditioner works as efficiently as possible and helps you save money, but it’s not the only way to boost efficiency. Here are some other methods to do so:
Raise the Temperature
This sounds like odd advice, right? Why would you want to make it hotter than it should be in your home? Well, actually, many homeowners make it way colder than it needs to be in their households. To maintain comfort, homeowners often set their thermostats down to 71°F, thinking that it will help cool the home down faster, when in reality most people are comfortable around 78°F, and turning it down lower actually doesn’t help the home cool down faster (it just causes your air conditioner to run longer, and therefore inefficiently).
You will save energy and subsequently save money by raising the temperature to a more reasonable level. It also helps system efficiency to raise the temperature when you’re not at home or when you are sleeping—those times when you don’t actually need your air conditioner.
Use Your Ceiling Fans!
We all know that ceiling fans are not capable of lowering the temperature of a room. But they can make you feel cooler. This is because fans help sweat evaporate off of your skin to keep you cool. So if you use your ceiling fans in combination with your air conditioner, it should let you turn the thermostat up a bit. Therefore, your air conditioner won’t have to run as long, and will subsequently work more efficiently.
Change the Air Filter
Many homeowners have the misconception that the air filter within their HVAC systems is in place to protect their indoor air quality. This isn’t the case, though. Your HVAC air filter is in place to protect the air conditioner (or heater) itself from dust, dirt, and other debris that can get inside and damage the components.
Changing this air filter is one small maintenance task that you can, and should, be doing on your own. We recommend that it be done every 1–3 months.
Keep Everything Clean
We do not expect you to try to get inside your air conditioner’s outdoor or indoor unit and clean the components—that’s our job! But what you can do is check the outdoor unit to make sure it’s unobstructed. This means making sure it’s free from debris like branches, leaves, lawn mulch, and other landscaping byproducts. This will ensure airflow isn’t blocked, and that your air conditioner works as it should.