The average residential home spent $110.21 per month on electricity. No one likes spending more money on utility bills than they have to, but that may be exactly what you're doing if you're making decisions about your air conditioner based on false information. Here's the truth behind three A/C myths that may be hurting your wallet.
Bigger Is Better
America has an odd cultural belief that bigger is always better, and in some cases—such as paychecks and bottles of syrup—that may be true. When it comes to your air conditioner, however, having one that is sized too big for your home is actually wasting energy and damaging the unit.
What happens when an air condition is too big is it cools the space too fast, resulting in two problems. First, this doesn't allow the unit to run long enough to properly reduce humidity in the home. Air conditioners extract moisture from the air, which is one way it cools down the space. An oversized A/C unit shuts down before it can have a noticeable effect on the humidity. You may still feel uncomfortable, and excess moisture in the air encourages mold growth.
Second, the unit will turn on and off more often than necessary. Sure, the unit cools fast, but then the temperature in the home rises and the unit has to turn on again to cool the home. Well-sized air conditioners will only cycle about 2 to 3 times per hour. However, oversized units will cycle more than that, which uses more energy and can require you to replace the machine sooner than expected as parts wear out faster.
It's essential you have a professional calculate the right size air conditioner you need for your home to help you avoid this problem.
Energy Efficient Models Are Always Better
Another myth is that energy efficient air conditioners are always the better choice. There's no denying these appliances can help you save money on your energy bills each month. If you have to replace your air conditioner for other reasons anyway, then opting for one that's energy efficient is a smart choice.
However, there's no need to swap out your existing A/C unit for an energy efficient one if there's nothing else wrong with it. There are other, and less expensive, ways to boost the efficiency of your machine. Using weather stripping under doors and windows and plugging cracks can prevent cool air from escaping the house and stop warm air from entering. Cleaning the air conditioner, registers, and ducts is another option. Keeping curtains closed or putting UV filters on the panes can minimize heat gain from the sun's rays.
It's a good idea to improve the efficiency of your existing machine before spending money to upgrade it.
Refrigerant Must Be Refilled Periodically
A third misconception that's been circulating around is refrigerant in an air conditioner must be topped off periodically. Coolant is not a consumable item in an A/C unit. This part of the machine is a closed system, and the refrigerant is reused over and over again to help cool the air passing through the unit. Low refrigerant in an air conditioner means you have a leak somewhere that must be patched.
Leaks can form in the coils and other places for a number of reasons, including age and manufacturer defects. Not only can leaks reduce the efficiency of your unit resulting in higher energy bills, but they are dangerous to your health. Inhaling the refrigerant can cause heart palpitations. The gas also displaces air, making it hard to breath in areas where the leak is bad.
It's essential you have refrigerant leaks fixed as soon as they are detected to protect yourself and your bank account.
For more information about these issues or to have your A/C unit repaired, contact a local HVAC contractor through companies like Aggressive Mechanical Contractors, Inc.
How old is the front door on your home? Have you ever walked past the door and felt a cool breeze coming from under it? Could it be time to replace your front door, or can you repair the one that you have? My site is filled with advice and tips for learning when to replace and when to repair a front door. You can learn from my personal experience of living in older homes how to know when it is time to call it quits on the old stuff and invest in new. Hopefully, my failures and successes can help you avoid the failures and go straight for the success.