5/23/2018 11:15:03 AM
The summer heat is on its way, and the Minnesota Commerce Department has air conditioner tips to help you keep your home cool while also saving money.
The Commerce Department's Home Energy Guide /commerce/home-energy/hvac/index.jspfeatures a Heating and Cooling section that explains how air conditioning (AC) systems work, the importance of maintaining those systems, and the energy- and cost-saving benefits of high-efficiency AC units. It also offers a range of ideas to reduce heat and humidity in your home, which will lower the energy demand on your AC system.
The complete Home Energy Guide (.pdf) is available on the Commerce Department website (mn.gov/commerce).
Here are some key tips to stay cool and save energy with your AC this summer:
AC systems should be inspected annually. Schedule an inspection as soon as possible before intense heat and humidity arrive.
Proper maintenance will improve your AC's safety and performance, reduce energy use and electricity costs, and prolong the life of your system.
A typical central AC system inspection should include checking voltage and belt condition, washing condensing unit coils, checking the drain line and confirming proper airflow.
Between annual checkups, homeowners can do several things to keep AC systems operating efficiently and safely.
One essential maintenance task is to routinely replace or clean AC filters. Clogged, dirty filters block normal airflow and reduce a system’s efficiency.
Central AC filters are usually located in the return duct near the furnace or air handler, while room air conditioners have a filter mounted in the grill that faces into the room. Ductless or high-velocity systems also have filters that need cleaning or replacing on a regular basis.
Some filters may require more frequent attention if the AC is in constant use, operating in dusty conditions or there are fur-shedding pets in the house.
Other do-it-yourself AC maintenance tips include:
Minnesota Energy Tips is provided twice a month by the Minnesota Department of Commerce's Division of Energy Resources. Contact the Commerce Department's Energy Information Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800-657-3710 with energy questions.