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Spring 2014 Newsletter

How you can save money by going with a higher–efficiency AC unit

Spring is here and summer is fast approaching. As you begin to tune up your AC unit to get it ready for the heat, you may also consider upgrading. The cost–effectiveness and energy efficiency of your total cooling system depends upon a lot of factors: ductwork, insulation, the layout of your home and property, including even such things as which part of your house endures the sun’s rays the longest. But, your savings in large part comes down to how efficient your air conditioning unit is.

The SEER rating is a number given to every manufactured AC system available on the market. The higher the rating, the higher the efficiency. Upgrading to an AC unit with a high SEER rating may save you money in the long run.

One of the most high–efficiency units on the market today is known as the ductless mini split air conditioner. As its name suggests, it uses no ductwork. Like central systems that use forced air through ductwork, mini splits have two primary parts: an outdoor compressor/condenser and the individual units that act as an indoor air handler. They are connected by a conduit that is installed behind the walls. They are not only known for their high–efficiency, but also for their small size and flexibility. By controlling your cooling through the use of zones, you can customize your living spaces; each zone has its own thermostat. They are also often easier to install than other conventional systems because they generally require only a 3–inch hole for the conduit. This can be especially useful when retrofitting older systems, or deciding about whether or not to install ductwork.

But even if you’d like to stick to conventional central air, there are many upgrade options. You can, for example, choose to replace only the outdoor compressor; although you should keep in mind that your system needs to be matched by an AC professional. Proper sizing and installation are also key aspects of upgrading to a high–efficiency system.

Whatever your reason of upgrading: whether to save money, help reduce your carbon footprint, or because you want better performance, your local professional technician can help you make the right decision.

 

Tune–up your AC unit and get ready for the heat

When your air conditioner is fully operational, it can keep you comfortable during the hottest days of the year. It’s imperative, therefore, that you maintain your AC unit throughout its lifetime. Spring is a great time to think about how you might tune–up your AC.

To tune–up your AC means inspecting, cleaning, repairing, and, if necessary, replacing parts of your system. To be done properly, much of this work requires the expertise of an air conditioning professional. A properly installed and serviced AC unit will maximize your energy–efficiency, and will help to save you money.

The first step is to call a professional. An expert technician will be able to assess any issues in the compressor, coils, refrigerant levels, electrical supply and thermostat. Attempting to do so yourself may be dangerous and could prove costly. Here a few maintenance tune–ups even the most efficient air conditioners could benefit from:

Clean or replace the air filter. Your air filter is one of the most important parts of your AC unit. It promotes airflow and prevents the passage of dust and other allergens from entering your ductwork or home. If you are highly–sensitive to allergens, particularly those that come about in the spring time, then this is an absolute must. Air filters also keep the parts of your AC unit working properly by preventing the accumulation of dust and other materials on the internal structure. Check your air filter monthly.

Insulate the ductwork. Your ducts are the structural skeleton of your indoor air system. They make the measured and even distribution of cool air possible, but they depend upon a closed system. As well as repairing or sealing any duct leaks and testing that the system is efficient, insulating ductwork tends to significantly reduce heating and cooling loss, sometimes up to 30%. By sealing air leaks, your cooling professional may be able to save you serious money this spring and summer.

Install a programmable thermostat. A programmable thermostat allows you to customize your home temperature for specific times of the day and days of the week. Not only will adjusting your temperature automatically cut costs, but it is also takes care of your home comfort for you.

Remember that only a professional AC technician can tune–up your system for this upcoming cooling season. Call one today.