Summer in South Florida is almost year round and you want to make sure your A/C unit is up to the task and whether it’s your central air or window unit here are a few ways to make sure you are getting the most out of your A/C.
This is important, check your manual for the recommended maintenance schedule. Issues caught early by your trusted HVAC technician will be cheaper than needing to replace a whole unit. In the meantime keep the area around your A/C unit free from debris. Wash dirt and dust off regularly to keep airflow at optimal levels and help reduce unnecessary wear. Keep grass and weeds from growing up and around your air conditioner as these also can cause airflow issues and worse if they grow into the unit itself.
Check Your Ducts
Leaks in your duct work can be costing you. Check for holes or cracks and seal them to make sure air isn’t leaking out unnecessarily. You can also buy insulation kits at any home store and the sweat equity you put in will pay off later.
Ceiling fans help keep air circulating and in the summer the breeze can make you feel cooler reducing the want to turn the thermostat down. Make sure your fans are spinning counterclockwise in the summer to help pull the cooler air up off the floor and circulate it around the room.
Insulating Windows and Doors
A modest investment to seal windows and doors to minimize outside air coming in and your cool air from escaping will more than pay for itself in the money you save on your utility bill. Evaluating wall, attic, and floor insulation and replacing older windows and doors with newer more energy efficient versions will also, ultimately, lower your energy costs. In lieu of window replacements you also have the option of…
Curtains and blinds on windows help insulate your rooms from excessive heat from the sun. The sun streaming in all day will raise room temperatures causing your A/C unit to work harder, expending more energy, and raising the price of your bill. A modest investment can help reduce your month to month spending.
This may not seem all that intuitive, but the hot sun beating down causes wear and tear on your unit. Providing shade can help minimize that and keeping the air around your A/C even slightly cooler reducing the amount of energy required to cool it. Making sure the unit is installed out of direct sunlight or providing a simple canopy will keep direct temperatures down and air in efficiency.
Setting Your Thermostat
For energy efficiency, the recommended setting for your thermostat for summer months is 78 degrees while you are home and 80 degrees when you’re away. For every degree under 78 you increase your energy usage by approximately 8% and that adds up quickly. 78 degrees will keep you cool and comfortable, but not freeze you out.
Preventative planning and maintenance are key to both keeping you comfortable and costs down during the warm South Florida weather. A few corrective measures on your part will keep the need for repairs to your A/C lower, but also help keep your monthly costs down, and create a more comfortable space to live and work in.