Air Conditioning Units & Hidden Costs

June is here, and summer is just on the horizon! Along with the picnics, BBQs and beach days, the rest of our time will still be spent at home, trying to escape the summer heat:

Is your home or commercial air conditioning unit adequately prepared for the heat?

Basic Maintenance & Best Practices

If you want your unit to last, a simple routine of bi-annual maintenance is key!

  • Vacuum around the vents and ensure they are unblocked.
  • Adjust your thermostat 5 – 8 degrees (up in summer, down in winter).
  • Clear the drain line by the cooling coil (usually above the furnace in the basement).
  • Insulate any exposed ductwork.
  • Avoid using the oven or dryer during the hottest hours of the day.
  • Clean the internal unit (evaporator and blower).

Be sure to consult your manual for the specifics, but cleaning the evaporator coil, evaporator drain, and changing your blower filter is important to maintaining an efficient AC unit. If after following these basic tips you notice that your utility bill is still high, there may be an electrical issue to troubleshoot

Energy Efficient Air Conditioners

HVAC units are the biggest power drainers in our house, but there has been progress in reducing the drain. One of the most popular industry standard certifications you may have heard of is known as ‘Energy Star’. The Energy Star program was started by the EPA in 1992 with the intention of reducing air pollution. As a result, these Energy Star certified units are designed to be much more efficient to operate when compared to regular A/C Units. They generally use about 8% less energy than conventional models and are guaranteed to save you substantially on your monthly utility bills, when installed correctly.

Tried and True vs. Bold and New

The simple fact is that HVAC manufacturers have become much better at making efficient, smaller, and cheaper units. For example, if your air conditioner was installed before 2010, it could be using a refrigerant blend (R-22) which may be costing you money! Newer units have fluid that better transfers heat, use variable stage fans to meter how much energy the unit draws, and use multi-stage compressors for an air conditioner that adapts to your specific home needs.

The Takeaway

Simply put, energy efficient units mean more savings in the long run. Depending on the wiring, type, and size, an inefficient standard A/C unit can cost homeowners substantially more than a well maintained, newer, Energy Star unit.

Whether you decide to purchase a newer unit and want to make sure all the electronics are in good order, or would like a professional to inspect your home electrical grid and appliance load needs, we’re here to help.

Let our certified professional electricians give you the best service possible. Contact us for a free home estimate today!