Do you know what makes your air conditioner tick? Air conditioning systems consist of many parts that perform the complex function of cooling your Coastal Bend home. Find out how your system works, and you may just get better performance and lower cooling bills.
Air conditioners cool household air by removing heat at the cold evaporator coil. Moisture in warm return air condenses on the cold coil, which results in dehumidification. Water condensation drips into a condensate pan and is supposed to drain away. If the drain becomes blocked with algae and mold, water can spill over into the home or furnace. Inspect your drainage system once a month, and clean as needed.
A clean air filter is your friend. A dirty or clogged filter is not. In fact, a clogged filter will rob you of energy dollars—as much as 15 percent increase in cooling —and can damage your air conditioning system. Change or clean the filter as recommended by the manufacturer or more often.
An air conditioner should be sized to the specifications of your home’s cooling load. You can lighten the cooling load with home energy upgrades, such as air sealing and boosting insulation. The windows are generally an inefficient system in the envelope as well. Consider installing window treatments, such as insulating curtains and awnings and see big cooling savings.
The air conditioning system’s primary job is home cooling, not dehumidification. Excessive indoor moisture can burden the A/C to the point it can’t keep up with cooling demand. If high humidity is a problem in your home, consider a whole-home dehumidification system to assist your A/C, lower cooling bills and make you feel more comfortable.
Don’t Forget the Ducts
Ducts should be inspected each spring for leaks, damage, insulation and disconnected duct joints. Poor duct design is responsible for as much as 20 percent increase in cooling costs for the average home.
For more details or more tips about your home’s air conditioner, contact the experts at CCAC. We serve residents in South Texas.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Corpus Christi, Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about air conditioners and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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