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Air Conditioning Myths That Are Costing You Money

Air conditioning is wonderful and necessary for many of us, especially during the hot summer months. But as with all things, some misconceptions and myths could be costing you money. Absolute HVAC Service will debunk some of these air conditioning myths so you can save some money while keeping cool this summer.

Myth #1: Open Windows Before Cooling the House

Some people say it's best to open all windows in your house and let the air conditioner run for a while before you close them. Opening windows is a myth because you will lose the cool air the AC has already produced. If you want to cool your house down quickly, this is not the way to do it.

The air conditioner works by pulling heat out of your house and dumping it outside. When you open a window, you let in humid, warm air from outside, which the AC then has to work harder to remove. It's a waste of energy. The solution is to close all the windows and turn the AC on. It'll take a little longer for the temperature to drop, but it'll be worth it in terms of energy efficiency. 

Myth #2: Close All Vents

When you turn on your air conditioner, air flows through the ducts in your home and into each room. If you want to cool (or heat) one room but not another, closing some of those vents may seem like a good idea, however, it could end up costing you more money and potentially damaging your system.

Closing off vents in unused rooms may seem like an excellent way to save money, but it can cause long-term damage to your system. When some rooms are closed off, and others are open, airflow gets disrupted and causes an imbalance in the system. The fan has to work harder to get air through these rooms, which increases wear and tear on the blower motor and makes the system less efficient when opened again (which should happen in winter when heat is needed).

Myth #3: Turning off the AC to Save Energy

"Turning off" the air conditioning doesn't mean it's turning off. The outdoor unit is always on and cycling, no matter what your thermostat says. What's more, older thermostats don't even have the option to turn off; they only allow you to set a temperature. So anytime the temperature goes above your setting, the AC will kick on and start cycling.

An AC has to be designed and installed correctly to be energy efficient. The best thing to do is leave your AC on at all times and set it at 78 degrees F when you're home and 85 degrees F when you're gone during the summer months. There's no need for a timer or fancy thermostat to do this for you; set the thermostat accordingly and forget about it!

Myth #4: The Lower the Thermostat, the Better

There is a persistent myth that you can stay cool by turning your thermostat as low as it will go — anything from 50 to 65 degrees. The truth is that setting your thermostat lower than usual will not make your home cool any faster, and it can lead to excessive energy use, higher utility bills, and more frequent repairs.

Setting your thermostat at 78 is generally considered ideal during hot weather. The higher you set your thermostat, the less energy your air conditioner will use. If you're worried about being uncomfortable at 78, there are plenty of ways to stay cool and save energy — such as turning off unused lights and appliances and using fans to circulate air. 

Myth #5: Air Conditioners Need Service Once a Year, Regardless of Use

Annual maintenance can be a great way to keep your air conditioner working at its highest efficiency and prevent problems that could lead to expensive repair. It's also a way for an HVAC technician to inspect the system for safety concerns. We recommend servicing your air conditioner once a year because most equipment warranties require it for the warranty to remain valid.

However, some systems can be serviced every other year rather than annually. You can probably have it serviced every other year if you have an older system (more than ten years old). If you have a newer, high-efficiency system (10 years old or less), we recommend being serviced annually because of its complex technology and parts.

Keep Cool And Understand Your AC

One of the most common myths about cooling your home in the summer is that if it is hot enough to make you sweat, you should lower your thermostat as much as possible so you can cool the house quickly. If your air conditioner is not working optimally, contact Absolute HVAC Service for AC repair or air conditioner replacement. It won't work because air conditioners don't work at a set temperature as fans do. You want to raise the thermostat when it is hot out instead of lowering it. 

Contact Absolute HVAC Service today for an analysis of your cooling needs!