Summer is officially here in East Tennessee. This means vacations, pool visits, lake days, and sweltering hot temperatures. It is tempting to crank the air conditioning down to the 60s to escape the summer heat but running the air conditioner constantly during the summer months can put a strain on your HVAC system and your wallet. Let us review some helpful tips for saving on your electric bill this summer.
Homeowner Maintenance for Your HVAC
Being a homeowner comes with a long to-do list of home maintenance tasks. These are some simple tasks you can do to keep your HVAC system running smoothly and help reduce your HVAC bill during the summer while staying as cool as possible.
Check Air Filters
You should be replacing your air filter regularly throughout the year. If you have not been keeping up with regular air filter changes, now would be a great time to start. On average, most homeowners change their filter every 1-3 months depending on their personal circumstances. If you have multiple pets or lots of pollen or dust, you might consider changing the air filter more frequently.
An air filter protects your HVAC from dust and debris. It also traps airborne pollutants and keeps them from circulating through your home. A dirty air filter reduces the efficiency of your HVAC system, requiring more energy to achieve the temperature you set on the thermostat. Lower efficiency means a higher utility bill, so do your bank account a favor and stay on top of changing your air filter.
Keep Vents Clear
Make sure there are not any heavy pieces of furniture or other large objects blocking any vents in your home. Additionally, avoid placing rugs on top of air vents because while a rug will not completely block airflow, it will weaken it. Restricting airflow in your home causes a strain on your HVAC system. Take advantage of every vent to keep the air flowing and your home cool.
Portable fans are an excellent way to help circulate air throughout your home. These can be placed near vents or in cooler areas of your home. You can install ceiling fans in your house to help move the air as well. Powering a fan requires significantly less electricity than powering your HVAC system, so consider using less AC or turning it off altogether on the occasional cool summer day. Make sure they are on the cool weather setting according to your installation directions.
Upgrade to a Programmable Thermostat
Try using a programmable thermostat. You can program when cooling is on or off, as well as the temperature setting. Set the temperature warmer when you are away and cooler when you are at home. Changing your temperature setting a degree or two can make a significant difference. Most newer thermostats have an app you can download to your phone to control your HVAC from anywhere. When traveling, set your temperature around 78-82 degrees to conserve electricity while you are gone.
Condenser Unit & Fan
The condenser unit of your HVAC system is typically outside, leaving it susceptible to damage or blockage from debris. Check for any grass, leaves, dirt, or other objects around the condenser unit and fan. You can clean these by hand or with a garden hose.
Utilize blackout curtains or blinds for your windows during the summer months to block some of the heat and sunlight. You can also install reflective film on your existing windows to help absorb 40-60 percent of the heat trying to enter your home.
There are some projects even the savviest homeowners should not do without proper training. An HVAC technician should come out to check the following items on your HVAC unit. Additionally, it is a good idea to set up annual inspections to keep your system functioning properly and efficiently all year long.
Wiring and Electrical
The wiring and electrical components in your HVAC unit should be checked regularly. If you notice any of the wiring looks like it is disconnected, damaged, or burnt, it is time to call a professional to check and replace any necessary parts.
Like in your car, there is a refrigerant in HVAC systems. The refrigerant absorbs heat from the air and moves heat out of the house. This can eventually run low from use or there could be a leak in the line. If there is a leak in the line, you will need to have it repaired. Refrigerant can be refilled and checked routinely by your HVAC company.
Clean Air Ducts
Ductwork is the network of pipes or vents that move air throughout your home. Debris can build up inside of the ductwork of your home over time. If there is too much dust and debris clogging your ducts it can restrict airflow. You can have your ductwork professionally cleaned to keep your HVAC system pumping clean air leaving your house feeling better and your family breathing easier.
Summertime with City Heat & Air
At City Heating & Air, we pride ourselves on putting our customers first. We know you want to make the most of your summer months enjoying time with family and friends, so we want to make sure that you are comfortable in your home and help you avoid any HVAC disasters. These are just a few tips and projects that can help reduce your HVAC bill this summer and keep your system at its best.
We would be happy to set up an annual inspection or a monthly service contract to ensure your HVAC system is working properly. Looking into the services we offer? Visit us online or call us at 865-938-1005 to schedule maintenance on your HVAC system today!