It’s important to always consider the great things that our air conditioning does for us on a daily basis. As homeowners we have an expectation that we want our unit to work constantly at the best rate that it can. However at times we forget what we need to maintain your air conditioning in top working condition. This post will be going over the 5 top things you shouldn’t really be doing to your air conditioner, but you probably are. This is why it’s so important to get educated on your air conditioning, because not only does it help you to maintain the life of your air conditioning, but it also helps to keep money in your pocket.
Not Changing your Air Filter
People tend to forget about changing the air filter in their air conditioning unit. Depending on your unit and it’s monthly use, that will determine how many times a year you should change the filter in your air conditioning unit. You may have to change your filter around 4 times a year, or you could need to change your filter 12 times a year. Normally you would need to change the air filter around every 2 to 3 months. However if you have pets, people who smoke in the house, if you run your unit non-stop, and even if there’s some form of construction around your house, you’ll have to change the air filter on a monthly basis. These changes are important for the health of you and your family, so it is a really important subject. If you choose to not change your air filter on a constant basis, then it is important that we discuss what the consequences could be of not changing your air filter out. Your filter can become clogged, because this filter is what catches the dirt and keeps other particles that are outside from coming inside your home. This all eventually leads to a clogged filter, and a clogged filter can lead to what? You guessed it, it eventually leads to a higher electric bill. While you would get a higher electric bill, it could also cause your unit to work so much harder than it needs to, so it can cause the unit’s possible break down, which is where you end up having to call us to fix your unit. So always remember to please change your air filter! If you don’t remember here are 5 consequences due to not changing the air filter:
- Allergens that can cause asthma and possibly a cold
- Physical symptoms like headaches, feeling fatigue, tightness in your chest
- Reduced Air flow
- Cooling Inefficiently
- Pushing your Power Bill through the Roof
There are these small microbes that are called microns and these can range in our air in ranges from 0.01 microns to 10,000 microns. These microns include viruses, oil smoke, fumes, and even other impurities which can range from 0.01 to 1 microns. Then we have other microns that range from 1 to 100, these are mold, pollen, fog, dust, and ashes. However dust that is being emitted from large industry factories go on a range from 100 to 10,000 microns. How filters are able to trap these particles is measured by using a standard that is called MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value). The values can range from 1 to 20, and this can trap particles that are from .3 micron to 10 microns. This is why it’s just so important to make sure to keep cleaning/replacing your air filter. An interesting fact about MERV is that surgery rooms usually use a MERV of 16 to MERV 20.
Not Turning on your Air Conditioning at all
While most of us that live in Florida swear by their air conditioning unit, because it’s way too hot to ever turn off your unit. There are some people that enjoy the natural hot weather of Florida and may not feel the need to turn on their air conditioning. While this may work for you at lowering your electric bill, which is what we all want at the end of the day. While it could save you on your electric bill, it also ruins your air conditioning unit, because while it is down and out of operation for long periods of time, it can attract mold. So imagine your unit growing mold all over it, GROSS imagine after if you need to turn it on for once, not only is there a chance that it could push the mold into your house, but it could break down. Which means you have to call someone out there to fix it, so please make sure to run your unit a few times a day. If you travel a LOT and this makes it hard for you to keep your air conditioning at least a few times a day, you can upgrade your thermostat to a WiFi thermostat that you can control from your phone while you are away from your house. So regardless of how far away you may be, you’ll still be able to turn it on and off when it is necessary.
Now a days we live in a society where we can literally find anything we want at the tip of our hands. Thanks to the advancement in technology we have these cell phones that basically make it so that we can get to anything and do anything by just pushing a screen. So why would it be any different when it has to do with your air conditioning? Now depending on your unit of course, you can get your thermostat changed to a WiFi compatible one. You would connect the new thermostat to your WiFi at home. With this kind of technology you can change the thermostat from your phone, whether you’re at home, another city, another state, or 15 minutes away from home.
Constantly Running your AC Unit
So just like not running your unit at all, it’s also a problem with having the unit running ALL the time. Consider this example, if you had a coffee maker, it’s one of those new ones that you can set the time so that it has coffee prepared at a certain time. Now lets add to the scenario, you’re not just using it for breakfast, but you’re using it every hour on the hour. You want fresh coffee at a high demand, eventually the coffee machine will begin to slow down and become unable to do it’s work. So just like you shouldn’t overuse your coffee maker you shouldn’t overwork your air conditioning unit. Not only will this cost you a lot of money, but it will ruin your unit. So think about it, while you’re away from your house keep it shut off so that it can save you energy but then at the same time you can let the air conditioning rest. So as with anything in the world, you have to deal with it in moderation. If you feel like it’s hard to turn off your unit, because it’s just always so HOT! You can always turn off the unit overnight, since your body can handle higher temperatures while you are asleep, it can help to keep your air conditioning from being highly overworked.
While some may have issues with wanting it to be cold and constantly changing the thermostat to keep it at a desired temperature maybe consider getting a programmable thermostat. Depending on the thermostat you get, it can help you program your daily temperature you want in your home. A more common programmable thermostat is 5-2.What 5-2 means is that lets say you set your AC to 77 Monday to Friday and set your AC to 75 Saturday to Sunday, which the thermostat would change for you automatically. To get the proper thermostat so that it is able to work with your air conditioner unit. If you don’t maintain some normalcy on your air conditioning, it could make your electric bill skyrocket. It is important to note that changing to a programmable thermostat, could reduce your electric bill up to 180 dollars a year. So it’s time to consider that instead of spending large amounts of money on an electric bill to upgrade on a new thermostat.
Setting your Thermostat Wrong
Sometimes when it’s really hot outside all we want is to crank that air conditioning to make it as cool in the house as fast as possible. While you may want to drop your thermostat that was set at 77 degrees to 65 degrees, because of how hot it is, reconsider for your air conditioning unit’s sake. First of all when you’re lowering your air conditioning unit it’s important to lower it at 2 degrees at a time. The recommended rule is to keep the temperature at the highest setting you’re comfortable with. The normal range is from about 75 to 78. When you leave this range and go much lower, it continues to add to the power consumption of your air conditioning unit. This means a higher electric bill for you, and even possibly a broken down air conditioning unit. So be considerate with your air conditioning unit, whenever you feel like lowering your thermostat in your home.
It’s interesting to note that thermostats have cool devices like the heat anticipator. What does this device do? This device shuts off the thermostat before the air inside of the thermostat actually ends up reaching the temperature that’s been set. However at times there are parts of the house that reach that temperature before the room with the thermostat itself, however with the device it gives the go for the thermostat to turn off, while the heat does reach the thermostat area. All of this makes sure that your unit isn’t constantly running on trying to heat up your home, which saves you money at the end of the day.
When You Pick a New AC Unit, Make Sure it’s the Right Size for YOU!
There is a lot of things that go into installing an air conditioner. Not only is it a lot of work, but it is a LOT of money. You also have to make sure that the people that are completing your installation know what they are doing, so they can get the right sized unit in your home. If the unit that’s being installed is way too small, then the unit is constantly trying to meet the demands which will make it eventually break down, which means a repair man to come in to fix it, which means more money. If the unit is too large, you’ll have the constant issue of it going wild and turning off and on whenever it wants. While it makes your home uncomfortable by constantly changing the temperature, a lot more energy is being used, which means a higher electric bill, and like before possibly you’ll have to pay a repairman to fix that is now broken. So make sure to hire a company that knows what they are doing when they are installing your unit, also make sure that you have proper knowledge of how big or small your unit needs to be.
Choosing the correct size on your air conditioning is probably the most important thing when it comes to your air conditioning. The issue with that is, that it’s NOT just about the square footage of your home. The contractor needs to be aware of the load of the home, which is basically how much cooling and heating does the home need to keep it comfortable for people to live in. To get the accurate load to determine the size of not just the square footage but, the building construction, where the sun is pointing, value of insulation, placement of rooms with the number of how many rooms, their size, the placement of windows and doors. Also gotta take into account the floors and what the climate in the area is like.