Is your air conditioner ready for the August heat?
Chances are, there’s a bit you can do to help your home stay more comfortable, save energy, and increase the longevity of your air conditioner.
Luckily, Owens Companies has a list of technician approved to-dos for you to keep your home comfortable during this scorching heat. Even if you’ve been comfortable this summer, a bit of prevention is worth an ounce of cure.
Replace the Filter
If you find your air conditioner working too hard, try replacing the filter. We have had a lot of pollutants in the air this summer, which means our air conditioning systems have been working extra hard to keep outside particulates out of the duct work. In addition to dust collecting faster on surfaces, you might notice a slight reduction in airflow. If this is the case, swap out your filter with a new one.
Your current filter may have visible blockages, or a color change. Sometimes the filter isn’t visibly blocked at all, but rest assured, the particulates it has captured are there. If you can’t remember when you last changed the filter, if it is bowed, or it is visibly discolored, it can’t hurt to replace the filter. Each filter size has a recommended use time indicated on it, and generally the thicker the filter, the longer it can be used. Be sure to write the date on the side of the filter when you install the new one. We recommend checking your filter monthly until you learn how long filters for your system last.
Using an old or blocked filter causes your system to work harder, which can lead to premature failure of the unit. Stay ahead of this by scheduling a filter change based on your household use and being aware of the air quality index.
Check the Fins
If your air conditioner is running longer, take a look at the fins. Although delicate flying seeds aren’t as prevalent now as they were just a few weeks ago, your air conditioner likely has more than a few caught in the fins. Effectively, your unit is being starved for air because the seed heads have formed a little blanket around the holes. This causes the air conditioner to take longer to reach the desired temperature. At Owens Companies, our technicians are trained to effectively remove any build-up.
If you see build-up of any kind, like cottonwood seeds, or maple seed heads, or other fine dust, your fins are likely blocked. Although it is possible to wash them off yourself using a garden hose with very little pressure, it is also very easy to damage your system when cleaning with the hose in this way. If you are uncomfortable attempting this, call Owens for service.
These fins are delicate and bend easily. Scrubbing them down with a brush, power washing, or using other tools between them can damage the fins and is not recommended. This is a job best left to professionals.
Keeping these fins clear of debris will keep your air conditioner running more efficiently, but knowing they need attention can help you figure out why your air conditioner is running longer.
Close the Shades
During the hottest, sunniest days, keeping the shades closed can prevent sunlight from impacting the air temperature inside. Effectively blocking the strongest rays of the sun from entering the room will add to your indoor comfort on the whole. Likewise, if you keep a window open, closing it during the warmest part of the day will keep cool air in, and warm, humid air out.
Turn off the Lights
Although LED lights emit less heat than older style incandescent light bulbs, any source of heat is unwelcome during these hot summer days. The simple solution is to keep the lights off when they aren’t in use.
Turn Up the Thermostat
Our last suggestion to keep your air conditioner in tip-top shape is to bump your thermostat up a couple of degrees. In addition to increasing the efficiency of the unit itself, as it has less work to do, you’ll be saving a bit money on energy costs.
Using a ceiling fan or a floor fan can help keep air flowing, which will keep you cool. Though it doesn’t change the air temperature at all, circulating the air keeps it from feeling stuffy or warm.
Still too Hot?
If you’ve tried our technicians’ suggestions to keep your air conditioner running in this scorching weather, and it isn’t cooling effectively, we’re here for you! With a call to Owens Companies, we can have your system keeping you cool in no-time. Give us a call today 952-854-3800!