Running your air conditioner all summer long in Louisiana can be pretty costly. It uses a lot of energy, and when your electrical bill arrives, you might be dismayed at how steep the cost is. Now, there’s nothing we can do about the price of electricity. But we can help you to make sure you use as little of it as is necessary to keep your home comfortable. You can decrease energy usage with AC maintenance. This includes professional maintenance and tasks you can do yourself to keep your AC running efficiently.
Over the course of a long summer’s hard work, an air conditioner’s energy efficiency gradually drops. This happens for a variety of reasons, but two of the biggest contributors are the presence of dirt and the absence of lubrication.
- Dirt: When dust and grime make their way into the inner workings of your air conditioner, they slow things down and make the air conditioner work harder. Decreased airflow and increased friction mean that the air conditioner is using more energy to provide the same amount of cooling power. When you have a professional technician perform AC maintenance, they will clean each component to remove all the accumulated dust and grime.
- Lubrication: In any system, moving parts encounter friction. Just as dirt will increase friction, lack of lubrication will as well. This leads to components not spinning freely and causing the compressor to work overtime just to keep things moving normally. It can even lead to overheating and potentially burn out your blower fan motor. During maintenance, your technician will apply lubrication to those parts that require it, allowing smooth and easy movement, but over the course of the year, that lubrication will wear away, so maintenance must be performed annually.
Maintenance You Can Do Yourself
While the above tasks (and other aspects of maintenance such as inspecting components and testing electrical connections) must be done by a qualified professional, there are two jobs you should do regularly to help prevent that loss of efficiency.
- Changing the Air Filter: While the air conditioner is being used every day, the air filter should be changed once a month. Begin by turning the unit off and removing the filter. If it’s disposable, you can throw it away and replace it with a brand-new filter. But some AC air filters are reusable. Simply wash the dust off, dry it completely, and slide it back into position.
- Keeping the Coils Clean: Central air conditioners have evaporator coils in the indoor unit and condenser coils in the outdoor unit, and refrigerant flows through those coils. They need to be able to easily absorb heat indoors and quickly release it outside, and any dust or dirt coating the coils acts as insulation and impedes that process. Dust on the indoor coils can be blown gently away with canned air, and dirt-encrusted outdoor coils can be washed with a gentle stream of water from your garden hose. Just don’t use a high-pressure nozzle! You don’t want to cause any damage.
If you consistently do the home maintenance tasks, and have professional central AC maintenance in West Monroe, LA done annually, your AC efficiency will be much better, and you won’t pay as much for the home comfort you deserve. As an added bonus, you’ll have fewer repair needs, and your system will last longer, potentially saving you a lot of money in the long run.
Contact Mike Smith Heating & Air Conditioning, LLC. We provide “Professional grade service.”