Cool AC Tips

Tips for your Air Conditioner

Weather in the good ol’ summertime puts quite a strain on everybody’s pocketbook because of the money it costs to air condition our homes. In fact, about 50% of the total we spend on utility bills during the summer months goes for cooling. While there’s nothing we can do to control the weather, there are plenty of things we can do to lower our cooling costs, starting with the AC system itself.

First, start off each month with a clean filter. If yours is the throw-away kind, replace it. If it’s a permanent filter, clean it. Let the monthly utility bill be your reminder. A clogged filter cuts way down on the amount of cold air your unit can deliver.

Check the outside components of your cooling system. The compressor is inside this unit and is surrounded on two or three sides with “fins” that encase coils. A fan in the middle pulls air through these fins to aid cooling those coils. If something like grass clippings, weeds, vines, or pet hair is blocking the air flow, your compressor is having to work harder and could just give up! That’s an expensive replacement you can not do on your own. You can avoid this by first, turning off the entire system at the circuit breaker box and simply cleaning the fins. Water pressure from the garden hose will do it. Give it time to dry before turning the power back on.

While you can’t control the heat outside, you can control the temperature inside your house with the thermostat. By setting the thermostat at 78 degrees (F), you can feel comfortable while saving some energy. For each degree below that economy setting, you’ll increase your cooling costs by 8%! That means if you set if down to 72 degrees, it’s costing you 48% more to run.

With these simple steps involving practically no outlay of cash, you can cash in on big summertime savings!

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