Busting Energy Saving Myths for Air Conditioners
Short of buying a new energy efficient system, what can you do to help lower the energy costs of running your AC this summer? Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, and Norfolk are no joke when it comes to summertime’s heat and humidity. You want to stay comfortable, but it shouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg, right?
Before you freak out and impulse buy a whole new air conditioner (we are 100% for educated customers!), take a look at our list of important DIY tips to helping lower your energy costs while still staying cool this summer.
Don’t Stop and Start Your AC Repeatedly
It’s important to know how your air conditioner works so that you can get the most out of it. Sometimes, people make a big mistake in assuming that you should only turn it on long enough to cool things down then turn it off.
Your AC actually needs about 5-7 minutes before it reaches its peak efficiency so if you want to get the most cooling with the least energy, it’s actually a good idea to let it run for a little bit longer, cool things off more, then turn it off once you’re comfortable.
Another reason to avoid the start-n-stop approach is that it shortens the life of the unit and its parts. Similar to how stopping and starting in car gives you worse gas mileage, taking the energy to start up more frequently adds more wear to your unit where letting it run longer helps the parts have more optimal run time and less “cold” starts.
If you’re not sure what to do with your situation, we recommend having a trustworthy HVAC professional do a tune up to make sure your unit is in top shape, and he or she can give you more detail on how to optimally run your system.<.p>
Keep Doors and Vents Open
Most modern AC systems are set up to help circulate air throughout your entire house, and they are designed to have a process to move air around. Sometimes, we want to close doors to make on room cooler or we close vents to channel the cool air to other rooms.
Sure, you can make certain rooms cooler this way, but you’re not actually saving much energy. Adding barriers where you HVAC system is designed to move air actually can build up air pressure in certain rooms. As the air pressure builds, your AC will work harder to try and keep pumping air in. Ultimately, the air will leak out other areas and your AC will be working even harder.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask a Professional
Ultimately, if your energy costs become unsustainable summer over summer, it might be time to call in professional help. As air conditioners get older, they begin to lose some of their energy efficiency. If the costs are climbing above what you want to pay, it may be worth the 1-time investment to update to a more energy-efficient system.
This investment can be just a routine check up where one of our amazing techs will make sure all of your parts are in the best possible shape for performance and longevity. Or, if you’re looking for something a little more substantial, we would be more than happy to help you find the best air conditioning unit for your needs and budget