A poorly maintained heating and air conditioning system can cause it to run less efficiently, give you higher energy bills and may be harmful to your health. Ailments such as allergies and asthma can be caused by air that isn’t properly circulated through your system. General knowledge of your system can help you avoid costly mistakes - both to your wallet and possibly your lungs. The following are some common mistakes you could be making with your system:
Not changing air filters often enough
This is one of the most common mistakes. Air filters keep your air fresh and breathable by filtering out dust and purifying the air in your home. Air filters should be changed on a regular basis - at least once every 3 months, and sometimes more often depending on the type of filter, and if you smoke or have pets. Not only do clogged filters slow airflow, making your system work harder to pull the air through, they also can be problematic to your health. If filters go too long without being changed, coils get dirty, leading to bigger problems down the line. Changing your filters often can also help save you between 5% - 15% on your energy bills.
Not getting annual tune-ups
Having an annual tune-up and preventive maintenance performed is crucial to keeping your system running smoother and increase its longevity. Also, during an annual tune-up, we check for minor issues that if not fixed, could become expensive major problems.
Not having your thermostat or vents placed properly
Having your thermostat too close to windows or to a heat source can cause it to not read correctly. Registering a higher temperature will make your system work longer and harder to try to cool the space. Additionally, keep furniture, drapes or curtains away from your vents, as obstructed vents can cause air to not circulate properly. Overworking your system can have lasting effects on your system and may shorten its life expectancy.
Overworking your system can have lasting effects on your system and may shorten its life expectancy.
Setting your temperatures too low
While it may feel great to come home to an icy cold room on a hot day or cozy warm one on a cold day, you could be overworking your system. As a result, you’ll spend more on your energy bills. 78ºF is the general recommended temperature for homes. The human body is an amazing thing that is capable of adjusting to temperatures pretty quickly. When you consider that raising your thermostat up by even one degree could save you almost 3% on your energy bills, it's worth considering adjusting the temperatures to the upper 70s.
Not having a programmable thermostat
Maybe you’re good at remembering to adjust the temperature before you walk out of the door, but if you are like most people, it’s probably not the first thing on your mind when you leave home. A programmable thermostat could save you hundreds of dollars a year on your energy bills. Also having a modern “smart” thermostat can make programming even easier. Many even allow you to adjust your settings from your phone while you’re away.
Cooling empty rooms
If air vents are open in every room of your house, you could be chilling a lot of unused spaces. The rooms that you seldom use don’t need as much cooling as high-traffic areas. Close off air vents in rooms that are temporarily unoccupied and make sure closet doors are closed so they’re not swallowing up the air. This will allow your system to work more efficiently in the rooms that are actually being used.
You’re not using fans
Utilizing fans in your home, especially ceiling fans, will keep the air circulating throughout your home. Running fans will help take some of the burden off your system, as well as help the air to feel cooler during the summer months. For a cooling effect during the summer, make sure your fans are rotating counterclockwise. This will help force the air downward, creating a windchill effect and promoting greater air flow.
The wrong sized system is installed
If your space is too large for your current system, you should get one with a larger capacity. A system that is too small for the space will have to stay on constantly and work harder to keep the home comfortable. This could cost you money on your energy bills and cause your home to not be as comfortable as possible. If you’re worried that this might be the case, contact A#1 Air today and we can send a specialist out to measure the airflow and recommend a unit that can do the job.
We hope the above tips will help lower your energy bills and keep your home comfortable and healthy. Do you have bigger problems than the ones listed above? Call us today if you have any questions, we love helping our customers.