Advice & tips from Kelowna Electricians at Epic Electric
Summer is here, and it’s time to bring your air conditioner out of hibernation. Your air conditioner is a vital summer appliance and an investment in your – and your family’s – comfort. It’s important to take care of your air conditioning unit so that it works efficiently day after day. This will ensure that the unit has a long life span and also keep your energy costs down, as the more efficiently the unit operates the less energy it will consume. So stay cool this summer with these air conditioner maintenance tips.
CHECK THE AIR FILTER
You need to check the air filter of your air conditioner every month. If the filter is dirty, clean it. If it is too far gone, replace it. Not changing the air filter can cause the air conditioner’s evaporators to ice up and reduce the unit’s overall efficiency by restricting air flow throughout the home. This results in unnecessary wear and tear on the unit, as well as higher energy costs because the unit is working harder than it should. In addition, the dust and dirt that is on that old or unclean filter is being re-filtered into the air every time the unit is in operation.
Keep the area around the air conditioning unit a ‘no clutter zone’. Inside the home make sure nothing is blocking the unit or restricting its air flow. Outside the home clean out any visible obstructions such as leaves or debris from the exterior of the air conditioner. Trim back bushes if they grow nearby and place your plotted plants elsewhere. Air must be able to circulate freely around the air conditioning unit.
Make sure to clean the individual components of your air conditioner regularly to avoid dirt and grime from decreasing its efficiency. Use a vacuum to clean the ducts and around the air conditioner itself. Please note never to use a hose to clean your air conditioner as this creates the risk of electric shock or fire hazard.
Run your air conditioner before you actually need it to ensure it’s working properly, and make sure that all of the access panels are secure. Check to make sure the thermostat is working and have it set to just below room temperature. This will ensure your unit isn’t running (and using energy) when it doesn’t need to.
It is recommended you have a check-up of your air conditioner at least once a year, preferably in the spring in order to ensure the unit is functioning properly before summer use. Finding and fixing small problems will prevent the development of bigger and more expensive problems. Watch for air conditioning issues. If you spot a leak or think something else is wrong with your air conditioner, turn the unit off immediately and call a professional technician. A professional will fix a leak, calibrate the thermostat, check electrical controls and coils, clean the unit as necessary, and offer expert advice. If properly maintained, an air conditioner should last 12-15 years.
Following this regular maintenance advice for your air conditioner will result in lower energy bills, reduced likelihood of breakdowns, and increased life of your air conditioning system.
Even if your A/C unit if fully maintained and running great, there are still some things you can do to improve energy efficiency. Smart thermostats allow you to control the temperature in your home using a schedule. They are connected to the internet allowing you to manage settings remotely from your smartphone or other devices. With these systems you can pre-cool the house so that it’s at a comfortable temperature when you arrive home instead of leaving the unit running all day while nobody’s home. Our trained electricians can easily install programmable thermostats for you.
Epic Electric is your one-stop-shop for everything electrical. From repair and maintenance, to lighting and complete installations, we have the experience and expertise to get the job done in a reliable and cost-efficient way. Call our Electricians in Kelowna today.