10 ways to maximize air conditioning efficiency
Of course, we all want the most efficiency we can possibly get out of our air conditioners. While replacing an old unit with a newer, more efficient model is, obviously, the quickest and easiest way to improve efficiency, there are things you can do with your properly working, current unit to maximize cooling efficiency.
- Close windows and doors. Your conditioned air can easily escape outside when windows and doors are open. If you need to air out of your home, turn your air conditioner off. It’s not your job to cool the neighborhood.
- Plug leaks in your attic, under doors, around windows, etc... Air leaks can be a big problem for lost efficiency. Your cool air will leak outside and could result in your air conditioner operating longer than it needs to be. This will drive up utility spending.
- Set, or program, your thermostat and forget about it. Constantly fiddling with your thermostat can make your system run longer than it needs to, can result in more frequent on and off cycles, and can overall lead to poorer home comfort.
- Shade your condenser. A shaded condenser is a more efficient condenser. Just make sure that it adheres to the rules in #5.
- Maximize airflow around your air condenser. Plants and any other thing that could obstruct air flow should be a least 2 feet away from your air conditioner. Maximize airflow results for maximum efficiency.
- Keep up with filter changes. Again, maximum airflow means maximum efficiency. A dirty filter cannot only reduce indoor air quality, but it can also reduce airflow and make your air conditioner’s job harder.
- DO NOT use registers for temperature control. When you open and close registers, it tampers with the cooling load your air conditioner is meant to cool. This can cause damage to your system and reduce home comfort.
- If you need specialized control for each room in your house…invest in a zoning system. You can divide your home by rooms or groups of rooms for customized home comfort and maximum efficiency.
- Set your thermostat at a reasonable temperature. A thermostat set at a lower temperature does not necessarily cool any more quickly. Your air conditioner will actually just run longer – driving up utility bills.
- And the most important thing…keep up with yearly spring preventative maintenance. Your contractor can make sure your system is in tip-top shape and operating at expected efficiency levels.
So, what do you do to make sure that your air conditioner is working at maximum efficiency levels?