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9 Important Facts to Know About Central Air Conditioning

As a homeowner, you can save a lot of money and time by learning about the components of your central air conditioning system and what you can do to keep it running efficiently. Here are eight facts about air conditioning that everyone should be aware of.

1 – Altering the Filter
A clogged or dirty air filter will cause your device to run inefficiently, reducing overall comfort and increasing energy costs. Replace the filter once a month during the hot season and every two to three months if your machine is only used occasionally.

2 – Repair Leaky Ducts
Smoke is the most effective way to detect leaks in your ducts. You can do this by lighting a stick of incense and keeping it at the connections where the ductwork parts meet. You have a problem if the smoke blows around. In most cases, these can be covered with foil or duct tape.

3 – Make Use of a Programmable Thermostat in Your Central Air Conditioner
You can use this technology to increase the temperature when you’re away from home, but be careful not to let it get too hot. If you do this, your unit will have to work harder to extract the residual heat from your house, defeating the intent.

4 – Wrap the Ducts in Insulation
Ducts should always be insulated, and this is particularly true if they are in crawlspaces or attics. Spray foam, batting, or even rigid foam will usually suffice, and they can be covered with foil tape. Reflectix wrap can also be used in small spaces.

5 – Maintain the Compressor’s Cleanliness
The compressor is located outside of the unit, and you can check it once a week and after windy storms to ensure that there is no debris stuck in the fins and that there is at least 24 inches (two feet) of space cleared around both sides.

6 – Avoid generating heat in the first place.
You can keep the blinds drawn throughout the day and add awnings to prevent the powerful rays from coming in to keep your unit from having to work too hard. You can also use ceiling fans or floor fans to circulate air in your house, minimizing the amount of energy used by your air conditioner.

7 – It is important to maintain your vehicle.
No matter how knowledgeable you are about prevention and home repair, there is no substitute for having a trained professional audit your unit on an annual basis. These people have been trained to detect minor problems before they become big ones, and they also know how to deal with electronic components that are harmful to the average person.

8 – Prevent Room Closings
Closing off rooms can lead to problems because air cannot circulate freely in your home. Keep the doors open, and if you need any privacy, leave the door slightly ajar. Even a few inches would allow air to flow freely and increase the performance of your air conditioner.

9 – When Something Else Fails, Upgrade
Old, inefficient systems are frequently beyond repair. And units classified as energy efficient used more electricity than those in use today until around the last ten years. Consider changing the machine if your device is more than ten years old and constantly in need of maintenance – or even if you and your family are uncomfortable. There are several low-cost solutions available.

Overall, understanding your central air conditioner device will help you prolong its life and keep it running efficiently. However, if these do-it-yourself fixes do not work, call a professional.

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