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You know those years when it seems to go from already hot to even hotter? No matter what you do, it just doesn’t seem cool enough. Your energy bills are skyrocketing and your central AC system seems to be working overtime. You can take steps to improve your AC’s efficiency while keeping tight control over increased energy consumption. Here are our tips for helping your AC run efficiently.

Take Steps to Maximize Your AC’s Potential

Help your central AC system work effectively by maximizing its potential. There are three things you can do to ensure it’s able to do its job without becoming an energy hog.

Dress Appropriately

If you’re wearing jeans and a sweatshirt and feeling too warm, you could easily switch to a T-shirt and shorts and feel cooler. You don’t need to turn down the thermostat. Dress appropriately for the weather and turn the temperature in your home up a bit. Your system won’t have to work as hard to keep your home cool.

Install Smart Thermostats

Install smart thermostats that learn your habits. It will adjust the temperature when you leave the house for work or school. It will turn it back down when you’re on your way home. These small temperature changes can make a big difference when it comes to your bills.

Use Fans to Circulate the Air

Ceiling fans help circulate the air in your home. It helps the cooled air reach rooms better and keeps the home feeling cooler. If you don’t have ceiling fans, use floor fans or air purifiers with built-in fans to help keep your rooms cooler, which reduces the work your AC has to do.

Make Maintenance a Priority

A properly maintained system is going to work as efficiently as possible. Make sure you take steps to prioritize maintenance.

Keep the Outdoor Components Clear

Your central AC contains an outdoor condenser and indoor unit. The outside unit has the condenser, compressor, coolant lines, and fan. If the vents for that fan are blocked, the released hot air has nowhere to go, so your system stops working efficiently. 

When maintaining your lawn, ensure you are trimming back any shrubs growing too close. Keep grass trimmed to ensure it’s not a problem. When you’re done, make sure the clippings and trimmings haven’t blocked the vents. 

You’ll also find that pollen, dust, and other airborne particles will build up on the coils. It makes it harder for the heat to leave those coolant pipes. Use a hose and spray them off as often as needed. 

You might need an eco-friendly cleaner to help loosen the build-up. An eco-friendly spray-on dish soap mixed with water is often helpful. Ask All Year Cooling for suggestions if that’s not working.

Replace Your Air Filters Regularly

There’s an air filter within the interior portion of your central AC system that needs replacing every month or two. The frequency depends on factors like how many people are in your home, how many pets you have, and whether people within the home smoke or not. Check your filters each month. If it looks dirty, replace it.

Have Your System Cleaned and Inspected Yearly

Make sure you have your system cleaned and inspected each year. A professional Miami AC technician can check that your system is working properly, clean the coils, and inspect the electricals. When a system is maintained regularly, it’s going to work efficiently and save money.

Help Your Home Stay Cooler

There are also things you can do beyond your system’s maintenance and operation. Steps you take at home help keep your home feeling cooler. Here are the easiest to take advantage of.

Address Any Leaks

If you have any leaks in your ducts or weatherstripping on doors and windows, fix it. You want to do everything you can to keep the hot air from getting into your home and reversing the cooling that your central AC system is doing. 

How long since anyone inspected your ducts? If it’s been more than five years, it’s a good time to have them checked for any cracks or holes that are letting hot or cold air escape into the walls.

Are your windows or doors drafty? When it’s windy outside, do you feel the air rushing in through a gap? Use weatherstripping and caulk to address those problems.

Keep the Sun Out

Solar heat gain is the term for how much your room heats up when sun comes in a window or patio door. That indirect sunlight can also heat the surfaces of furniture and flooring and increase the temperature in a room indirectly. 

Room darkening and insulating blinds go a long way at keeping the sunlight from heating your rooms. Honeycomb blinds also help keep a room cooler. 

Consider painting your walls a light color rather than a darker color that absorbs sunlight. The same goes for floors and furnishings. The lighter they are, the better it is for reducing solar heat gain.

There are things you can do outside, too. Put in awnings over patio doors or any windows that get a lot of sun during the hottest hours of the day. Shade trees help a lot. 

Turn Off Heat Generators When Not in Use

A computer, TV, and oven warm up a room faster than you might imagine. Minimize how much those electronics and appliances run. Instead of baking a pizza in the oven, move outside to your grill and cook it out there. Try to keep TV usage to cooler times of morning and night when possible. 

Reducing a desktop’s overclocking by as much as 10% can reduce the temperature in a room by almost 4ºF. Much of this depends on how much ventilation the room has, as well as the room’s square footage. Increasing ventilation in a room where a desktop is used can decrease the room’s temperature by 5ºF to 9ºF.

TVs have gotten better over the years. The more energy efficient they are, the less heat they generate. But, some TVs are still able to heat a room as much as 6ºF. LED TVs, which are more common now, are the better choice. If you’re still using an old plasma TV or other older TV, it’s going to warm your room more than an energy-efficient TV.

An oven is known to increase the temperature in the kitchen by upwards of 5ºF. Again, this does depend on the ventilation in the kitchen and surrounding rooms and how high the temperature is set. You’ve felt the blast of heat when you open your oven door to take things out. That heat enters the kitchen and warms the home. We recommend cooking outside as much as possible on the hottest days.

By following All Year Cooling’s tips, your home stays cool and your bills stay low. If it’s time for a new system, we’ll help you find the most efficient system for your budget and home’s size and design. If your current system just needs some TLC to get back to prime working order, we can help with that too. Our team can help you maximize federal energy tax credits and instant rebates from Florida Power & Light. Reach us online or by phone to learn more.

All Year Cooling