With summer now officially underway and temperatures continuing to rise, the last thing a homeowner wants to experience is a broken air conditioner. According to the U.S. Census, more than 91% of homes have central air or a window air conditioning. Knowing this, it’s important for homeowners to prioritize their HVAC system not only during the summer but year-round. Here are three tips to keep your air conditioner running smoothly, while also lowering energy bills:
- KEEP AC UNIT AND SURROUNDING AREA CLEAN
- When you routinely inspect your indoor and outdoor unit it allows for consistent and effective air flow. Your summer checklist should consist of removing covers and debris, replacing filters and damaged insulation, checking the coil drain, and cleaning supply vents and vent grills. If you’re not sure where to begin, start by replacing your dirty air filter. The U.S. Department of Energy states that you can lower your energy usage by up to 15% by just replacing your old filter.
- REGULAR MAINTENANCE CHECK-INS
- It’s recommended that your HVAC system should be checked once a year. According to Energy Star, the best time to schedule your annual maintenance is either in the spring or fall to allow for any necessary repairs before temperatures change. Being proactive with regular scheduled check-ins will ultimately lower the risk of emergency repairs or replacements. According to this recent USA Today article, “tune-ups typically cost $60 to $200, while a full AC replacement can cost $5,000 or more.”
- INSTALL SMART THERMOSTAT
- The U.S. Department of Energy suggests adjusting your thermostat 7 to 10 degrees higher than your normal temperature for 8 hours a day, which can help you save up to 10% a year on heating and cooling. When switching to a smart thermostat, a homeowner can control the temperature easily at home or away while also gaining insight into energy savings.
A final consideration, with adoption of heat pump technology on the rise, is also servicing that equipment on an annual basis or, if a replacement is in order, factoring in the benefits of and considering this technology. Now being installed in approximately 40% of new U.S. homes, heat pumps can offer homeowners a more efficient solution to heat and cool their spaces, potentially saving on their energy costs and reducing their greenhouse gas emissions.