If you’ve lived in Texas for a while, you already know our scorching summers are nothing to laugh at—and those hot temperatures are already climbing in 2022. We’ve seen record-shattering highs across the state, from San Antonio to Galveston, and summer’s just beginning. In other words, you can be forgiven if you’re worried your air conditioner can’t keep up with our extreme climate! Fortunately, there are plenty of things you can do to improve your AC efficiency, ensuring that you can rely on it even on the hottest days of the year.
For a few quick tips to preserve your AC while protecting your wallet, read on.
1. Find Your Ideal Temperature
If you want to balance efficiency with savings, finding the right temperature can help. According to Energy Star, setting your thermostat at 78 degrees when you’re home can be ideal for both your comfort and your wallet. When you’re asleep, that number should hover at around 82 degrees, and you can set it even higher than that when you’re away from home.
Of course, these temperatures won’t be ideal for all homeowners, so it’s important to find your own sweet spot. Play around with your thermostat’s settings until you find the warmest temperature that keeps you and your household comfortable.
2. Automate Your Thermostat
Knowing your perfect summer temperatures can be helpful, but most of us won’t remember to adjust the thermostat as often as we should. That’s where your programmable settings come in.
Make sure that your thermostat is set to automatically regulate your home’s temperature when your family is at home, sleeping, away for the day, or even traveling on vacation. If you’ve already done this, don’t forget that a change of seasons is a good time to double-check your timing, especially if you have children who are spending more time at home during the day.
3. Check Your Air Filters
Changing your air filters might feel like a tedious chore you can postpone, but these simple devices play a huge role in your HVAC efficiency. When your filters grow clogged, it’s harder for your unit to circulate cool air throughout your home. Worse, the air that it does circulate will be riddled with indoor pollutants, including pollen, dust, and pet dander.
Experts recommend that you change your air filter at least once every three months, though you may want to check it more often than that. Depending on your household makeup, you may need more frequent changes, especially if anyone under your roof has respiratory or health issues. When you replace your filter, make sure to opt for a high-quality filter with a solid MERV rating.
4. Inspect Your Vents
Though you may not think of this task when performing your regular HVAC maintenance, it’s important to check the vents and registers throughout your home every now and then. Just like with your air filters, an accumulation of dust and debris in these areas can make it harder for your AC to circulate cool air.
To prevent this, be sure to dust or vacuum your vents as needed. You’ll also want to check for any household materials that may be blocking your vents, including rugs, window treatments, and furniture.
5. Clean Your Outdoor Unit
Your outdoor unit takes a beating throughout the year, so it’s crucial to check on it to ensure efficiency. We recommend doing this twice per year: once before you start relying on your AC for summer cooling, and once before you need the furnace for winter heating.
Trim any plant growth around the area, including weeds and bushes, and do a quick visual inspection to make sure that your outdoor unit is still level.
If you feel comfortable doing so, you can also cut the power to the AC and remove the panels. Look inside your unit to check for bent or damaged fins, hosing them down to remove any debris. You should also clean and rinse the condenser coils.
6. Improve Your Insulation
One subtle culprit in the fight for more HVAC efficiency is poor insulation. If there are air leaks in your home, all the cool air you’re paying for is constantly escaping!
Break out your caulk and seal any gaps around your windows and doors, and address any exposed ductwork. You may also want to consider weather stripping and door draft stoppers. Don’t forget to check the insulation in areas like your attic and basement, both of which are prone to air leaks.
7. Call an Expert for Maintenance
If you’re hoping for better air conditioning efficiency, the best way to get it is by checking with an expert.
Getting regular preventative AC maintenance once or twice a year can ensure that every part of your system is working properly when you need it most. It’s also a good way to identify small issues that can chip away at your AC’s efficiency—or, worse, snowball into something that requires major repairs.
Let Us Enhance Your AC Efficiency
If you’re struggling to improve your AC efficiency, the tips and tricks above can be a great way to get started. Though some of them may seem simple, these small steps help you extend your system’s lifespan while reducing your utility bills.
Beyond the quick fixes above, be sure to partner with us for assistance with your air conditioner this summer and beyond! We’ve gained a reputation as the trusted team for Point Blank, Cold Spring, Woodville, Corrigan, Onalaska, and Livingston HVAC repair and maintenance. To learn how we can improve your air conditioning, reach out to us today.