5 Air Conditioner Facts Every Homeowner Should Know
With a basic grasp of how your air conditioning system works, you’ll feel confident that you’re maximizing cooling efficiency and taking the right steps to help the system last longer. Following are some air conditioner facts and basic operation tips that can help you achieve these goals.
Air Conditioner Basics
The nature of heat energy is to move from a warmer place to a cooler place. That’s primarily why your home needs to be properly sealed and insulated. Air conditioners capitalize on natural heat movement by manipulating refrigerant through pressure changes. As warm indoor air passes across an evaporator coil containing extremely cold refrigerant, heat in the air transfers to the refrigerant. An electric compressor pumps the refrigerant to the outdoor condenser coil.
In the process, the refrigerant becomes extremely hot and releases heat outside. The cool airflow blowing from the vents in your home is the same air, but with less heat energy. Here are a few more helpful air conditioner facts to know:
- Free airflow: To maximize heat transfer, uninterrupted airflow is needed through the ducts and across the evaporator. Check the air filter each month, as a clogged filter can increase cooling costs by 15 percent.
- Ductwork: Leaky ducts are like a leak in your wallet. Look for dirt streaks on insulation and use a smoke pencil to locate leaks. Seal duct leaks with mastic paste and metal tape.
- Thermostat settings: Set the thermostat to 78 degrees when the home is occupied, and up to 85 degrees when you leave for work. Better yet, use a programmable thermostat for automatic comfort and savings.
- Maintenance: Professional preventive maintenance pays for itself in energy savings, fewer repairs and a longer-lasting system. Consider a maintenance plan to keep your air conditioner in tip-top shape each spring and your furnace ready for winter in the fall.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues, especially heating, ventilation, air conditioner and plumbing issues, so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.
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