How to Prepare Your Home for the Hot Summer Months Ahead
Why the AC is Most Important in the Summer
For the same reason that a furnace or heater is important in the winter, the AC unit is important in the summer.
Once the temperature gets to the high 70s or even higher, many people start to turn on their air-conditioning unit. Some may even keep their unit on to keep the temperature at 70° throughout the year, which is understandable.
The AC unit is most important in the summer as opposed to spring, even though the spring can still bring high temperatures, especially in certain locations around the world.
If you know that your home gets extremely warm in the summertime, then it doesn’t make sense to wait to get your AC unit maintained, so the unit can be used whenever you need it in the summer.
It’s not impossible for an AC unit to break down during the summer, but this is why you should make sure it’s maintained every year, and get a new AC unit if you need one.
Always make sure the AC works before summer.
Many weather applications can provide you with forecasts up to 20 days in advance, which means you may know that hot weather is coming very soon. If you know that you’re going to be facing 80° and 90° days, then don’t wait until those days before you make sure your AC works properly.
Test the AC on your own by turning it on and making sure it’s cooling the rooms as necessary, and if the rooms are not getting cool, the coolant is low, the thermostat isn’t working right, or the AC won’t work at all, then call your HVAC specialist.
Many don’t realize the importance of maintaining their AC unit and simply use it year after year without consideration of how the unit is functioning. Without proper maintenance, it’s not if your unit will break down but when.
Maintenance is the Key
Your HVAC unit will need maintenance, even if it also has a heating unit attached. Those who have central air in their home know the importance of maintaining their HVAC unit, especially since it pushes out heat and cool air.
When an HVAC specialist comes out to work on your unit, they’ll be able to check any and everything on the unit to see if it’s functioning properly. In some cases, too much freon has been put into the unit, causing it not to work properly or even freeze in the middle of summer.
You may not even know that your unit is malfunctioning because you haven’t checked it on your own and may feel that it’s working properly, but a specialist will be able to tell you otherwise. Those who have freezing units have too much freon or other problems, and this inconvenience will require a specialist to address the issue.
Maintenance is supposed to be done every single year, especially if you’ve had a hiatus when using the unit. If you haven’t used the AC in several months, then turning it on right away is not the smartest idea, especially since maintenance should take place before you turn it on again.
Once the HVAC specialist comes out, they can fix any problems that the unit may have and give you tips on how to keep the unit running properly. In certain cases, you may need a new AC unit, especially if it’s 10 years old or older.
Your goal is to have an AC unit that has a higher temperature rating (SEER) of more than 11.6, whereas some older units have ratings much lower than this, which means it’s not going to cool your home efficiently on the hottest days.
You’re also going to want a high efficiency air conditioner, which means you can run it much longer than typical air-conditioners and still save up to 40% or more energy usage in the home.
Your HVAC specialist can help.
The moment you find that something is wrong with your HVAC unit, make sure you call out a specialist. The specialist will have a list of things that they’ll check if they’re simply doing maintenance, but if the unit is not working at all, then they can do some troubleshooting that will help them to identify what’s wrong with the unit.
Here is a list of things that an HVAC specialist can do:
- Troubleshoot and fix the thermostat
- Fix the ducts if they have problems
- Change the air filter
- Refill the freon
- Check the AC coils
- Help to keep your home energy efficient
- Fix a broken AC
- Maintain the AC unit each year for use
The HVAC specialist will be able to fix any problems you have with your AC unit, so you should never wait to call them, especially if the weather has already started to get hot outside. In certain places, the weather can get warm as early as February, whereas other locations may not see high temperatures until mid-July or later.
Your HVAC specialist will be able to change the air filter, refill the freon, check the coils and more. If you’re also worried about energy efficiency in your home, then consider talking to the specialists about getting a high efficiency air conditioner, which will help your home to stay cool but keeps your energy bill lower. If buying a new air conditioner is not in your budget this year, then ask the specialist how you can make your unit more energy-efficient.
You may also want to consider whether the windows and doors in your home need weatherstripping because this may be allowing the cool air to escape once AC is turned on. Once your AC unit is working correctly, you will be able to enjoy the summer indoors without worrying about excessive heat.
Tune up and maintain your AC unit by calling Gene Johnson Plumbing & Heating in Seattle, WA at 206.792.7495.