September may be the month when summer officially ends, but in Texas it can often have the most brutally hot temperatures. Home air conditioning systems face a tough challenge this time of year: they’ve already put in long hours through the season cooling down homes, and the wear and tear can catch up to them during these last heatwaves. Maintenance for ACs in spring gives them a higher chance of making it through the end of summer without problems.
But even if you remembered to have AC maintenance done before summer, you may still face cooling problems at the tail end of the season.
In this post, we have some tips for how you can ease the workload on your AC so you’ll have a worry-free close to summer.
Don’t push the AC past its limits
Do you know what your air conditioning’s limits are? The lowest you can set the thermostat for cooling is 60°F, but that isn’t the limit we’re talking about—it’s far past it! Your AC can lower the temperature in your house by a maximum of 20°, enough to stay cool on most days. For example, if it’s 90°F outside, the AC can get the house down to 70°F. Trying to lower the temperature below that will force the AC to run for too long. Keep this 20°F difference in mind.
Raise the thermostat as much as is comfortable
While we’re on the topic of the thermostat, the best way to give your AC a break during hot weather while also giving your pocketbook a break is to raise the temperature setting as high as you find comfortable. We recommend 78°F during the day when people are home (then raise it 8°F at night or when the house is empty). This not only forces the air conditioner to run less, it slows down heat gain in the house, making it even easier to keep cool.
Regularly change the AC’s filter
The filter in an air conditioner protects the internal components from dust and debris coming through the return vents. The filter will become clogged over time, taking from 1–3 months depending on the filter’s strength. A clogged filter left in place throttles airflow and puts immense strain on the blower fan. This can lead to the entire AC shutting down. Clogged filters can also cause the evaporator coil to freeze over. If you keep up with changing the filter on a regular basis, you’ll spare your AC a lot of unnecessary work.
Clean the outdoor unit and clear the area around it
The outdoor condenser can have collected dirt and grime over the summer, and this obstructs the AC’s ability to release heat from the house. Shrubs and branches growing close to the condenser will have the same effect. You can clean off the condenser with a hose on low pressure (don’t blast water into its grills) and then clear away objects from around it and trim back plants. The condenser needs about 1’ clear on all sides.
If you run into AC problems at this time of year, call us for air conditioning repair in Plano, TX. All of our work is backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Rely on Boone’s Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. for your comfort. “Doing the right thing for over 50 years.”