While people love having air conditioning, few homeowners jump for joy at the price of an air conditioner replacement. When you buy an air conditioner, you’re buying an investment in your home’s comfort, an investment that you want to last as long as mechanically possible. That’s why it’s important for AC owners to know what they can do to give their AC system (AKA. their investment) a long, healthy lifespan.
Here is how to keep your air conditioner running efficiently for the long-term.
- 1. Provide shade for your outdoor unit.
Providing your AC’s outdoor unit with shade will allow it to operate more efficiently. In fact, research by the EPA indicates that shading your air conditioner can improve its efficiency by up to 10%. When an air conditioner operates more efficiently, less strain is being put on its components, allowing the system to last longer.
If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, it’s generally best to get your AC’s outdoor unit installed on the north side of your home. If that’s not an option for you, you can also consider sheltering it from the sun with shade trees or an awning.
- 2. Give the outdoor unit room to breathe.
Air conditioners “cool air” in that they remove the heat from warm air. During this process of removing heat from the air that was in your home, your AC’s outdoor unit dissipates a lot of heat into the area immediately surrounding it. That’s why it’s important to provide adequate room for ventilation around the unit.
If you put up a wall, a hedge, or a line of shrubs around your outdoor unit, make sure to give it at least one foot of horizontal clearance and at least five feet of vertical clearance so that the unit can operate at maximum efficiency.
- 3. Remember to change and check on the air filter.
This tip applies year-round. It’s crucial to change your HVAC system’s air filter on a regular basis to prevent problems caused by inadequate airflow. If an air filter is left in place too long, it can accumulate a thick layer of dust, dander, and other once-airborne particles. When that layer becomes too thick, your HVAC system is not able to draw in enough air to function properly.
The first problem this leads to is a lack of efficiency, but the problem can eventually cause your system to overheat and even break down.
- 4. Get your AC serviced every spring.
Your AC inevitably gets wear and tear throughout the warmer months of the year, and it can develop quite a bit of dust and grime on its coils even when it’s not in use. Just as you would get your car serviced on a regular basis, it’s important to get your air conditioning system serviced regularly as well. Experts recommend getting your AC serviced in the spring so that it’s fully cleaned and equipped to take on the months of heavy use up ahead.
At Woodward Heating, we know that HVAC issues can be taxing, and we are here to make the installation, maintenance or repair work stress-free! When you contact our team, you will benefit from our world-class service and professionalism.