Most of us can’t imagine living in a home with no air conditioning. While AC was once a luxury item, it is now a very common feature in most homes and an absolute necessity in some country’s hot regions. But with the rising cost of electricity, many homeowners are asking how to get the most out of their AC unit while also reducing their utility bills. Below is a list of steps you can take to ensure that you will be comfortable in the summer months. And that your air conditioner will be giving you its best effort to keep your home cool and your energy bills as reasonable as possible.

A Little TLC Goes A Long Way

As with anything in your home, providing a little TLC and maintenance can go a long way to keeping the item functioning at peak performance. When thinking about your AC unit, there are several things that you can do to keep the cool air flowing as affordably as possible. The first step is a little spring cleaning. Take a few minutes to hose down the condenser unit outside to remove dust and debris from the coils. This will keep them functioning at their peak. Also, trim back any plants or grass that may be growing too close to the unit. You want maximum airflow to the condenser to keep your home nice and cool this summer.

Next, head indoors to continue the spring cleaning. Dust the vents and air returns. Make sure that both are entirely accessible and not blocked by any furniture that could prevent the cooled air from circulating through your home. If you have not cleaned your ducts in a few years, this is an excellent time to consider the project. 

Your last indoor cleaning task is critical. Install a new air filter in your HVAC system. While many homeowners think that the air filter keeps the air in the house clean, that is not its primary function. This filter is specifically designed to trap dirt and dust before it enters your AC unit and damages the expensive components that are inside. So a new filter is the best way to start the cooling season.

Knowing the critical job of the AC filter, you should also commit to inspecting the filter each month. Set a reminder on the first of the month to complete this task. While it might not appear to be necessary, it can save you a great deal of money each month. As an air filter is doing its job removing dust from the air, it gets more and more clogged. Eventually, the filter is covered in dust and dirt, making it very hard for air to pass through it. When this happens, your AC is overworked trying to pull air through the dirty filter. The short term implication is that you are wasting valuable energy because the AC must run more frequently and work harder to create the cool air that you need. In short, you see an increase in your electric bill just because the air filter is old and clogged.

The second issue is more long term and much more costly. Because your AC is overworked, pulling air through a clogged filter, it is wearing out more rapidly than expected. Most units are rated to last 10 to 15 years. But that is under ideal conditions, meaning a clean air filter. A clogged air filter can shorten the life of your AC unit by several years. And that means a very costly replacement years earlier than you might have anticipated. So invest a few dollars in a clean air filter every month for the best and longest service from your AC. And if you need help with these service items, call (512) 910-8123 to schedule an appointment with the pros at Parobek Plumbing & Air Conditioning.

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