Efficiency Tips for Central Air Conditioning

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To reduce your utility bills, save money, decrease greenhouse gas emissions and make your A/C long-lasting, energy efficiency is key. To keep your central air working optimally, follow these easy tips:

FOR EXISTING A/C UNITS:

  • Change the filters when dirty! Check it every 1-3 months and replace with a good quality filter.  The filter’s “MERV” rating, on a scale from 1-12, will indicate how well it works–the higher, the better.  Pleated filters work much better than the cheaper flat mesh types.  A good environmentally-friendly choice is an electrostatic filter which is washable and reusable (look for those with a lifetime warranty).
  • Clean up the area around the A/C unit so that it is clear of debris, dirt and leaves.
  • Inspect the duct system for leaks and disconnects.  Learn about duct sealing at EnergyStar.gov.
  • Have it professionally maintained every year before you start using it.
  • Install a programmable thermostat to customize the times your A/C needs to run instead of needlessly leaving it on all the time.  Run it only on the hottest days, at a higher temperature (perhaps 78 degrees or so), which will still eliminate the humidity and cool your house.

WHEN IT’S TIME FOR A NEW A/C:

  • To determine whether or not you need a new system, check out these guidelines.
  • Buy the most efficient model you can afford, like those rated by Energy Star.
  • Have it properly installed.  According to EnergyStar.gov, “Improper installation can reduce system efficiency by up to 30% — costing you more on your utility bills and possibly shortening the equipment’s life.”
  • Install the A/C unit on your home’s eastern or northern facing side to avoid the unit heating up in the hot afternoon sun, which will make it work harder.  A shady area is best.
  • Install it on a level surface.

Tag(s): Energy, Greenhouse Gas Emissions / Global Warming, Greening the Home

Comments

One Response to “Efficiency Tips for Central Air Conditioning”

  1. energy efficient glass windows on August 20th, 2012 4:47 pm

    Energy efficient windows can also assist in keeping your house the right temperature and lower the electric bill.

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