5 Things You Need to Know About Air Conditioners

Posted by on May 21, 2010 at 11:17 am

We’ve been really lucky with weather in the northeast this season! Sure, we’ve had a few rain storms, but Mother Nature can be excused since we’ve often had amazing sunny days above 70 degrees. With an increase in air conditioner use as a result, there are some things you should know about your units. Here are 5 things to watch out for and techniques for increasing the life and efficiency of your air conditioners.

1. Change the filter often during the cooling season

While your air conditioner is cooling you off, it’s acting as an air purifier as it prevents outside debris from blowing into your home. When was the last time you took a look at your unit’s air filter? Cleaning or changing it will increase efficiency, decrease your energy bill, and can potentially benefit your family’s health. Make a mental note to clean the filter at least once a month in the summer to keep your A/C running like new.

2. Leaks can affect the performance of your air conditioner

Window A/C units are always difficult to seal correctly. To see if you have a leak around your windows, light a stick of incense and hold it where the unit and window frame meet. If the smoke blows around, there’s a leakage. Nothing a little foam, tape or weather seals can’t fix!

3. You can increase efficiency by placing the unit on the north or east side of your house

The sun, the reason why we need air conditioners in the first place, can really affect the output of your units. Try to shield them from the sun as much as possible, as putting them in direct sunlight reduces their efficiency by up to 10%.

4. Shield the unit inside, too

Increase the life of your unit by closing blinds and shades around the unit when you are not in the room. You should also consider running floor or ceiling fans (that are turning counter-clockwise) as well to aid in cooling. The air conditioner doesn’t need to work as hard and will therefore last longer. Plus, fans will move the dry air your air conditioner dehumidifies around.

5. Air conditioners have changed considerably from 10 years ago

Cooling technology and federal laws for efficiency have come a long way since the last time you may have purchased a window unit; the investment you make now could very well pay for itself over time. When purchasing a new unit, check the energy efficiency ratio, or EER. Devices with higher numbers will cost less to operate. You can also read our article on how to choose the right air conditioner for you.

Our pre-season air conditioner installation sale is still going strong, so now is the time to purchase a new unit! Ask your P.C. Richard & Son sales associate or click our live chat help on any product page on our website for information on how to keep cool this season.

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