With summer comes hot days, which means sometimes you just want to stay indoors where it is cool. This can backfire, though, if you make one of the following summertime AC mistakes. Read on to learn what they are and what you can do to avoid them.
#1: Not using your ceiling fans appropriately
Your ceiling fans help your AC work more efficiently. It may seem that they achieve this by simply circulating the cool air through the room, but they have an even more important purpose. The fan should have a switch located on the side that allows you to switch the direction of the blades. Make sure it is set so the blades move counter-clockwise. This pushes air down, which feels cooler against the skin and allows you to make the most of your AC without turning down the thermostat. Save the clockwise setting for winter, when you need to redistribute the warm air that collects near the ceiling.
#2: Ignoring good window management
How you manage your windows depends in part on what type of cooling system you have. If you have an evaporative cooler, you need to crack open two windows, each on opposite sides of the house, to allow airflow for maximum cooling. For a central AC, all windows should be closed for optimum performance. Window coverings also come into play. Close the shades on the side of the house that is receiving direct sunlight, otherwise your cooling system will be fighting the warming of the sun's rays and you may end up feeling warm or wasting energy on cooling that isn't necessary.
#3: Skipping important maintenance
Regular maintenance is a must if you want to stay cool this summer. At a bare minimum, change the filters in the AC every other month, or monthly if you have pets or live in a dusty environment. It's also a good idea to have the main unit cleaned out, lubricated, and inspected once a year, generally at the beginning of the cooling season. This way you can avoid any unexpected repairs from skipped maintenance at the height of a summer heat wave. Finally, consider upgrading your older thermostat to a newer programmable model. These help you maintain the perfect temperature without wasting energy on unnecessary cooling, since you can set the AC to only operate when you are home.
For more help, talk to a home air conditioner repair technician in your area.