With summer approaching, you’ll soon be depending on your AC unit to keep you comfortable. Learn about a few things that can get in the way of keeping your home cool and take the appropriate precautions to avoid them.
Inadequate Air Flow
If your AC unit doesn’t have the proper air flow, it could end up costing you more in energy bills or—even worse—it could stop working altogether if overworked for too long. The following are a few problems that result in improper air flow:
Improperly sealed unit: If there are air leaks in your unit, warm air could be getting in or the cold air could be seeping out. You can easily resolve air leaks by resealing with weatherstripping.
Dirty or blocked registers: If you have a forced air system, you want to regularly vacuum the registers to make sure dust and other objects don’t build up and block the airflow completely.
Clogged Filter: If you’re replacing less often than once a month, you could end up with a clogged filter, especially if you have cats or dogs in your home. Not only does a clogged filter not cool your home as well as it should, but the unit will have to work harder to do its job, resulting in higher energy bills for you.
Taking the actions above can help improve your air flow, the efficiency of your unit, and your energy savings.
Inaccurate Thermostat Readings
Are you finding that your AC unit is running more often than it should? Or does it feel much colder than the temperature settings you programmed into your thermostat? If you answered yes to either of these questions, your thermostat sensor could be getting inaccurate readings.
To further investigate what is causing these inaccuracies, find out if:
There are electronics near the thermostat: The sensor could be detecting heat from these appliances if they are too close to it. Make sure to keep lamps, TVs, and other electronics away from the unit’s thermostat.
The unit and/or thermostat are getting too much sun: If you have a window AC unit that gets a lot of sun during the day, it’ll heat up and make it work harder to keep the air coming out of it as cool. Likewise, a thermostat that sits in direct sunlight will work harder to combat the heat. Unfortunately, the rest of your home won’t be as hot as the incorrect temperature that your thermostat is registering. If possible, put window units in areas of the home with windows that don’t get as much sun. To cut down on the sunlight hitting your thermostat, you can shut doors, use blinds or curtains, or relocate your thermostat.
The sensor is out of position: If knocked out of position, you might find that your unit is cycling constantly or having other issues. To put it back in position, you can adjust the wire holding it in place. Be sure that you move it so it is near the coil but not touching it.
To avoid these issues and others, it’s also very important to have a technician check the condition of your unit every year.