Air Conditioner Mistakes That Could Be Running Up Utility Bills and Impacting Home Comfort

air conditioner mistatkesIt only takes a few air conditioner mistakes to turn an energy-efficient system into a utility bill inflator. In most homes, the central air conditioner is already the largest single consumer of electricity. You don’t want to make the meter spin even faster if you can avoid it. The central A/C is also the primary comfort control appliance in the home.

Air conditioner mistakes impact performance, as well, making your living spaces less livable during hot weather. Most of these errors are preventable by simply following a few guidelines:

  • Oversizing – Bigger is not better. Installing an A/C with too much cooling capacity for the home means high operating costs and a system that doesn’t maintain consistent temperatures or humidity. Every new A/C purchase should be preceded by a professional load calculation performed by an HVAC contractor.
  • Bad location – Don’t install the outdoor condenser and compressor component in direct sunlight. Heat transfer is inhibited in hot conditions. Pick a shady spot on another side of the house.
  • Lack of clearance – Proper air circulation is required on all sides of the outdoor condenser/compressor. Don’t attempt to camouflage the unit by allowing vegetation to grow up around it.
  • Poor maintenance – Change the air filter monthly. Every year, schedule an annual A/C checkup with your HVAC contractor.
  • Over-cooling – There’s no need to keep the house cool while you’re gone all day. Utilize a programmable thermostat to maintain home temps below 90 degrees during most of the day, then cool the house to the desired setting an hour before you return.
  • Drastic thermostat corrections – If the house is too warm, cranking the thermostat down to 60 degrees won’t cool it any faster. It will probably result in an over-correction, dropping the temperature too low and wasting energy.
  • Use a ceiling fan – Air circulation provided by a ceiling fan makes rooms feel cooler. You can bump the thermostat up a few degrees with no comfort penalty, saving energy.

For more information on common air conditioner mistakes and how you can avoid making them, contact the professionals at Reliance Home Services.

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