Cooling and heating bills can make up most of your total utility expenses based on the Department of Energy studies. Using central air conditioning is part of an enormous energy cost for a typical household in the United States, especially those in sunshine areas such as Las Vegas. With warmer weather these days, the air conditioner has become a necessity, and as much as you don’t like the hefty bills, you would be compelled to buy. In that way, you can go through hot days conveniently.
But no worries. There are simple, practical, and no-cost ways to improve air conditioning efficiency in your homes. In that way, you get the most from your equipment while minimizing the costs. We’ll share these tips in this article. Note that these ways can help keep air conditioning systems healthy as the weather becomes hotter and households will have to start turning on their units. By the way, these are also details to consider when you’re looking for a Las Vegas AC repair center.
1. Change the Air Filter
The filter is a component of any air conditioning system for good reasons. It is located within the air handling unit which is in your house. Before the cooled air is blown through the ducts and into your living spaces, the air filter traps particles from the air. But as it continuously does so, the pores in the air filter become filled with debris and dust. The air cannot easily pass through the filter once it is full. Airflow becomes hindered because of the dirty and cluttered air filter. As a consequence, there will be a less comfortable indoor environment and a low airflow. That also leads to the cooling system being overworked in an attempt to dehumidify and cool your home’s air. It’s thus essential to check the air filter every month and consider replacing it every month or quarterly.
It is also a good idea to replace the filter monthly if your home includes more cats or dogs. You wouldn’t want their furs filling up the air filter and causing other malfunction and overwork. Also, consider choosing a filter marked with a high minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV) rating. That’s because a filter with a MERV rating of at least 13 sequesters pet dander, dust, mold spores, and pollen. On the other hand, a filter with a MERV rating of at least 16 sequesters viruses and bacteria. If you have problems understanding these technicalities, you can always consult your supplier or shop technicians. In that way, they will teach you where the air filter is located, how to change it between AC tune-ups, and which size you need.
2. Clean the Condensate Drain
Setting your home’s temperature to an optimum level is just one of the functions done by your AC system. Another role it plays is to dehumidify your home environment. The moisture in the air condenses as the warm air in your home is cooled by the air conditioner’s chemical refrigerant. This moisture not only drains into the condensate line but also the air conditioner’s drain pan. Following that, much mold, and algae pile up in the condensate drain. The water then backs up into the indoor part of your air conditioning system with the muck clogging the pipe. A total AC failure is sometimes inevitable, especially since water damage is too expensive to repair. So, here’s what you have to do. Consider removing the PVC condensate line once each month and, following that, pour a 10 percent bleach solution into it. To loosen the much, use a soft-bristled and thin brush. Before reattaching the muck, rinse the pipe with water. As discussed earlier, some suppliers or shops have technicians who can do that technical part. You can always ask for their support. Otherwise, you might end up exacerbating the damage leading to more costs to handle.
3. Remove Debris Around Equipment
Your AC cooling system requires at least a 3-feet perimeter around the outdoor and indoor equipment to operate efficiently. This perimeter allows heat dissipation and facilitates airflow. Ensure that weeds, shrubs, flowers, and tree branches are kept away during the growing season and that the grass is trimmed and away from the outdoor unit. Furniture, bins, and keep boxes in your house should also be kept at least three feet away from the indoor unit. Avoid placing items such as furniture in front of your home’s distribution and intake vents. That is to avoid the blocking of vents, decreasing your air conditioning system’s efficiency, and slow airflow.
4. Check your Thermostat Settings
Checking your thermostat settings regularly is always a good idea to begin with. Consider installing a programmable thermostat now if you don’t have one. Homeowners in Las Vegas and beyond can avail of services from shops and suppliers whose technicians install smart and programmable thermostats. Note that your smart thermostat can revert back to factory settings without a stable Wi-Fi connection, which is not a good sign. Meanwhile, a sudden loss of power in the house can also cause the settings of your programmable and smart thermostats to be lost. That’s why it always matters to check the settings if there are changes in your work, errand, or school schedules. In that way, you’ll ensure that your thermostat increases your structure’s temperature while not at home. With that, you can lower electricity use, decrease the workload on your cooling system, and ultimately save more money.
5. Wash Exterior Housing
A large metal housing is embedded in the outdoor unit of your air conditioning system. It is, therefore, exposed to the elements because it is outdoors. Dirt, dust, and pollen can all accumulate on the housing. Even debris, feathers, and bird and animal droppings can also pile up to it. Note that if the housing is dirty, the capacity of the air conditioner to release heat to the outdoors drastically lessens. To rid the housing of debris and other clogging particles, use the jet sprayer of your garden hose. If you notice some sap from nearby trees and other sticky residues, turn off the unit and use a specially-made fin brush to clean it. Now again, this is a technical process, and damages can happen if done improperly. So, if you’re new to it, consider asking your supplier’s help or the shop where you bought the equipment. Don’t hesitate, as it’s the technicians’ job to ensure that you have a good start with your AC unit.
6. Open and Clean All Vents
As your air conditioning system continuously produces cooled and dehumidified air, your home’s air vents will start filling up. The air vents may also accumulate human hair, dirt, pet, and dust in that process. So, it’s essential to remove the vent covers at least once a month or two. Use biodegradable dish soap and a microfiber cloth to wipe them off clean. To suction dirt, dust, and other particles out of the vent opening, consider using a vacuum cleaner’s hose. You should do this more often if you have pets in the house especially cats and dogs since they yield furs every day. After reattaching the covers, ensure that the vents are open. Note that your home will have spots that are too warm or too hot when the air vents are closed.
7. Get the Air Ducts Cleaned
Your air conditioning system will operate more efficiently if you vacuum the opening of your air vents. Unfortunately, the vacuum cannot reach all the way through the deepest parts, especially the ducts. That is why it’s imperative to have a professional clean-up of your home’s air ducts to complete the removal of debris and dust throughout the line of the ducts. Your home’s indoor air quality will dramatically improve when you conduct professional air duct cleaning. That allows you to have a more convenient feel of your home as you could breathe more easily. Keep in mind that your air conditioning system should not be overworked after removing the layers of particles from the air ducts. That is to keep your house cool and comfortable. Duct cleaning should be done every two years. Do it annually if you have pets in the house, especially cats and dogs.
8. Schedule Preventive Maintenance
To ensure a continuous and smooth operation, consider doing an annual AC tune-up. There are various companies out there that offer a thorough inspection of every part of your home’s cooling system. Their technicians could help diagnose minor issues that could lead to bigger and more expensive problems. They can also lubricate the moving parts of the unit after cleaning the system. Doing that dramatically lessens unnecessary wear and tear and thus, reducing the risk of breakdowns and extending the system’s lifespan. The AC unit’s energy efficiency can also go up by up to 30% if it undergoes preventive maintenance. Sure. You would have to spare some amount to cover the technicians’ costs. But that’s nothing compared to the amount you need to pay when major damages happen or when you have to buy a new unit. So those are just among the top tips to execute to ensure that your AC unit will continuously run smoothly and efficiently. With warming days ahead, you would not have to worry about sweats and panting.