It’s the height of summer in Florida, which means it’s hot. With a daytime average temperature of 92 degrees Fahrenheit in July and August, Tallahassee residents rely on their air conditioning systems to keep cool. And when the thermometer exceeds that average temperature, the efficiency of our AC units becomes even more crucial. We have already experienced some triple-digit temperatures this season, but they have not breached the record 105 degrees Fahrenheit day Tallahassee residents experienced on June 15, 2011.
There’s plenty of summer days ahead, though, so making sure your AC is running smoothly should remain a priority. Temperatures will likely near or exceed 100 degrees again in the weeks ahead and could even breach that 2011 record. Even absent such extremes, your AC system is critical to assuring your comfort. Thus, the air conditioning experts at Tallahassee’s Air Control Heating and Cooling have a few tips for keeping your air conditioning running smoothly during the summer. With more than 50 years of HVAC experience in the north-central Florida area, we’ve weathered the heat and know how to maintain the efficiency of air conditioning systems.
Eight Tips for Efficient AC Cooling in the Summer
- Upgrade your thermostat. Today’s smart thermostats offer high-efficiency settings that can adjust temperatures based on home occupancy and other parameters. You can easily change these settings remotely via an app. When upgrading your thermostat, consider setting up a zoning system. This will help deliver more efficient cooling to rooms far from the central thermostat.
- Keep cool air inside. Older homes in Florida tend to lack efficient insulation, weather stripping, and caulking that help keep cooled air from leaking out of the house. You can significantly improve the cooling efficiency of your AC system by insulating your attic and sealing windows, doors, and ductwork.
- Use your fans. When you run a ceiling fan in conjunction with the AC, it can make the room feel cooler. This allows you to set the thermostat to a slightly higher setting.
- Speaking of thermostat settings…. A thermostat setting of around 78 degrees Fahrenheit or higher is considered optimal for energy savings. A general rule of thumb is that each degree below 78 degrees increases energy consumption by about 8%, while each degree setting above 78 degrees can decrease it by 3% to 5%. If you get in the habit of keeping the setting at or near 78 degrees, it will feel cool enough during the heat of summer, especially if you supplement it with ceiling fan usage.
- Pamper your outdoor condenser unit. For the best in AC cooling, take good care of your outdoor condenser unit. Keep the unit clear of debris and ensure its drain line can flow unimpeded. Drain lines can be cleaned and cleared by flushing them with white vinegar and hot water. This should not be a problem if your AC system undergoes regular maintenance. If your condenser is exposed to direct sunlight, figure out a way to provide it shade without impeding airflow. Much like the sun makes you hotter, the sunshine heats up your condenser, which makes it work harder.
- Speaking of sunshine…. If you’ve got direct sunlight coming into your home via the windows, you should consider blocking it during the summer days with blinds, curtains, or other window coverings. That incoming sunshine increases room air temperature, making your air conditioner work harder.
- Reduce other heat sources within the home. The oven and other heat-producing appliances, such as the dryer and dishwasher, emit additional heat into the house that your AC unit will need to overcome. To the extent possible, you should try to use such appliances during the cooler nighttime hours. If you have to cook during the daytime hours, make sure you turn your stove’s exhaust fan on. This will help remove its emitted heat. You can also cut household-induced heat by replacing your incandescent lightbulbs with LED ones.
- Give your AC system the gift of regular maintenance. Regular maintenance ensures that your AC system operates with peak efficiency. It helps prevent costly breakdowns, and reduces age-related system deterioration.
Join the Air Control Club!
For the best in air conditioning maintenance in the Tallahassee area, consider joining the Air Control Club. With three different plans, Air Control Club membership provides your AC system with inspections and preventative maintenance that will keep it running at optimal efficiency, reduce the potential for breakdowns, and extend its operational lifespan.
Air Control Heating and Cooling has been delivering the best in HVAC service, maintenance, installation, and equipment sales, to our customers in the Tallahassee, Havana, Quincy, Monticello, and Crawfordville area for almost half a century. For all of your air conditioning needs, contact us today at (850) 562-1234.