Air conditioning units should last for 15 years or more if properly maintained. Most of us, though, aren’t taking the steps we should to take care of this important and expensive part of our home.
Change the filter at least once every few months—more if you have allergies or asthma or have pets. A dirty filter restricts the airflow, reduces the cooling capacity and makes the compressor worker harder and run hotter, Basically, it shortens the life of the unit. This is an easy thing to remember to do!
Twice a year, a professional should come to clean and inspect your system. This should include washing your outdoor unit, a leak check, replacing the filter, checking the drain line, and checking that all the components are using the proper amount of electricity. The duct system and the safeties should also be inspected.
Don’t change the temperature all the time. This may be tempting to do each day depending on whether or not you’re home, or perhaps because you’re trying to get a fast cool down. This is not good for your system, has to work harder to drop the temperature during the lows. That is a lot of wear and tear. You may want to consider other ways to get cooler faster, such as fans, keeping the blinds and curtains closed, and limiting the use of appliances that generate heat such as the oven.
Get an energy audit. Units work much harder than they should because of air leakage. This means more money out the window. Make sure that after this is done you seal up everything properly to make sure the air is no longer escaping.
Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week! Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!
We all know central AC is great but can be expensive. What are some other options to look into?
Whole-house fans use 90 percent less energy than air conditioners, and typically cost less than $1000, even with installation. They draw cool morning and evening air through open doors and windows and force the hot air up through the attic and out the roof vents. Good places to put these are the upstairs stairwell or a hallway ceiling with 3 feet of clearance above the fan. The drawbacks are that the inside temperature will only go as low as the outside temperature gets, they can make allergies worse by drawing in pollen, and large fans need quite a bit of ventilation in the attic.
A window AC unit can cool up to 650 square feet, but windows need to be the right size and you’ll need an electrical outlet nearby. They only cost a few hundred bucks.
In-wall air conditioners are similar to window units, but they have vents on the back instead of on the sides and they sit slightly farther from the exterior wall. You will need to cut a hole in the outside wall of your home and may need a new electrical unit. They typically cost less than $800.
Portable air conditioners are easy to use but about twice as expensive than a window unit of the same size, and use more energy. They sit on casters on the floor and vent hot air through a hose running through a window, wall or sliding glass door.
A mini-split system air conditioner is sort of a hybrid of central air and a window unit. A small condenser sits outside and connects to an inside evaporator mounted high on the wall or ceiling. Installation is a bit more expensive than other options.
A few other options to consider: a ventilator fan installed in the wall or floor or a vent or duct booster fan, which sits on a ceiling, floor, or wall register.
Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24-hour emergency service 7 days a week! Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!