What can I do to Help Improve My AC Unit’s Efficiency?

Keeping your home cool throughout the long, hot summer months is never cheap simply because your air conditioning uses much more electricity than anything else in your house. This is why it’s always important that you make sure your AC is working as efficiently as possible, and here are some simple ways to help you do just that.

1. Replace the AC Air Filter Regularly

Hair, dust and debris will always quickly build up on the AC air filter whenever your air conditioning system gets lots of use. If you don’t make sure to replace the air filter regularly, it will eventually start to clog, leading to much less air being able to flow through the filter. When the airflow through the filter is restricted, your air conditioning won’t cool nearly as quickly or effectively because there is less warm air flowing over the evaporator coil. If there is less warm air coming into the system, there will also be much less cold air flowing out of your vents. A clogged air filter can also easily cause your AC evaporator coil to start freezing up, which will prevent your AC from cooling entirely and lead to the system blowing warm air out of the vents.

The general recommendation is that you should replace the air filter at least once every three months. However, you are usually better to replace it every month or two during the hottest parts of the year when your air conditioning gets much more use and runs for many more hours each day. If you have pets in the home, you will also want to replace the air filter more often since all of the pet hair and dander will lead to it clogging more quickly.

2. Clear Vegetation and Debris From Around Your AC Condenser

For an AC system to work effectively, there needs to be sufficient space around the AC condenser unit outside your home. Any vegetation near the condenser will make it more difficult for the fan to circulate air through the unit. Leaves, twigs and debris can also easily clog the sides of the unit and, again, lead to poor air circulation. This is why you should always clear any vegetation around the unit so that there is at least 3 to 4 feet of clearance on all sides and also regularly sweep up leaves and debris from around the unit.

The issue is that, if sufficient air isn’t constantly flowing through the condenser, it’s difficult for the unit to release all of the heat energy that your AC system removed from your home. This causes the refrigerant temperature and pressure to increase, which means the system won’t be able to remove heat from inside your home as effectively, leading to it using more energy and cooling far more slowly. High refrigerant pressure also forces the compressor motor in the condenser unit to work harder, which increases the chances of the unit overheating or breaking down.

3. Make Sure Your Vents Are Open and Unobstructed

On really hot, humid days when your AC may struggle a bit more to keep your home cool, you may be tempted to close the vents in some rooms in an effort to direct more of the cold air to those parts of the home you’re currently using. While this practice sounds good in theory, it will actually do more harm than good and result in your AC system not working as efficiently.

The problem is air will get trapped inside the ductwork since it has nowhere to flow out. This results in the static pressure (resistance to airflow) in the ductwork increasing, which forces the system to work much harder since it’s more difficult for the blower to distribute the cold air evenly throughout the home. Whenever the pressure in the ducts isn’t properly balanced, it usually results in much more air blowing out of the more centrally located vents and little to no air coming out of the vents that are located toward the ends of the duct system.

4. Schedule an AC Inspection and Tune-Up

The best thing you can do to improve the efficiency of your AC system and ensure your home is always cool and comfortable is to schedule an annual inspection and tune-up. Having the system inspected will ensure that it doesn’t have any issues that could limit its energy efficiency or negatively impact its performance. An annual inspection will also go a long way toward decreasing the chances that the system could break down during the summer or need costly repair work.

An ac tune up will also greatly improve the efficiency of the system by ensuring the evaporator coil and condenser coil are clean, the blower works effectively and the system has the proper refrigerant charge. Neglecting to have this essential preventative maintenance performed each year can cost you lots of money due to higher energy bills and increased repair needs, and it will also likely reduce the lifespan of your AC system.

At BELOMAN, we’re always ready to help with any of your AC maintenance or repair needs, and our team can also take care of any AC installation, heating or plumbing needs you may have. We are proud to be your top choice for HVAC and plumbing services in Belleville. We also offer architectural metalwork and air quality services. Give us a call today to get all of your needs taken care of professionally and promptly.