3 Ways To Extend The Life Of Your Central Air Conditioner
The best way to avoid expensive air conditioner repairs is to perform the maintenance your system needs before any problems develop. There are many simple tasks that homeowners can do to keep their air conditioner running efficiently and to minimize the risk of a breakdown. Here are three steps you can take to extend the life of your air conditioner.
Maintain Good Airflow
Many homeowners will try to save on their energy bill by closing vent registers on rooms that don't need to be cooled. Unfortunately, this does not have the desired effect because your air conditioner will continue to push the same amount of air through your ducts. Closing off too many vents in your home will simply create choke points, forcing your air conditioner to work harder to circulate air. This wears down your air conditioner more quickly, and can also cause your ducts to leak due to increased air pressure.
If you find yourself closing several vents in your home, your thermostat is likely set incorrectly. Leave your vents open and adjust your thermostat until your home remains comfortable. This will extend your system's lifespan and improve its efficiency.
Even if you are not closing your vents, you may be reducing your system's efficiency by blocking them. Take care not to place any furniture over your vents so that airflow is not disrupted and your system can cool every room effectively. Blocking vents will cause you to run your air conditioner more frequently and for longer periods than would be necessary with good airflow.
Keep the Condenser Clear
The condenser is the most likely part of your central air conditioner to experience problems because it is exposed to the elements. This means a bit more care will be required to keep the condenser in good condition than is needed for the rest of your air conditioner.
The first place you should look when performing maintenance on your condenser is the coils. The coils are located on the sides of the unit, behind the vent slits on the outer casing. It is essential that the condenser coils receive adequate airflow, as they are responsible for dissipating heat that is removed from the air in your home as it is cooled.
The most important thing you can do to make sure the condenser coils are getting enough airflow is to keep weeds and bushes trimmed away from your condenser. Cleaning the coils is usually only required when there is visible dirt or other debris lodged in the coils. Remove the condenser casing and try to suck debris out of the coils using a vacuum hose. If this is ineffective, you will need to turn the condenser off and spray the coils down with a garden hose.
Use Other Cooling Solutions
Limiting how often you use your air conditioner will naturally extend its lifespan by slowing the rate at which components wear. This is an excellent reason to utilize a variety of cooling solutions within your home instead of relying solely on your central air conditioner.
You will often find that ceiling fans and box fans are enough to keep a room comfortable on all but the hottest days. An added benefit of this method is that it allows for true zone cooling, unlike central air conditioners which are designed to cool your entire home evenly. Use blinds and heavy curtains to limit the amount of radiant heat that enters your home through windows, and avoid using ovens, dryers, and other heat-generating appliances during the hottest time of the day.
Use these tips so you can keep your central air conditioner in good condition for years to come and minimize the frequency of air conditioner repairs or replacement. Check out websites like http://a-1american.com for more information.