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Riley Heating & Air Blog

How You Can Save Money and Save Your AC During Heat Waves


We’ve had some extremely hot stretches this summer, and we can expect several more before the fall cooling finally arrives. Your home’s air conditioning system will run often to keep your home comfortable during heat waves, and that can lead to high electricity bills and possibly a worn-down air conditioner that needs repairs or even an early replacement.

You can depend on us for any help you need with your air conditioning in Columbus, GA, but we’d like to provide some preventive advice today—ways you can lower the cost to run your AC in the heat and also remove strain from it so it has a better chance of making it to fall without serious problems.

Schedule AC maintenance if you didn’t in spring

We strongly advise our customers to always schedule air conditioning maintenance each spring. This is the best way to ensure an AC stays energy efficient and doesn’t accumulate wear and tear too rapidly. It’s also the best defense against an air conditioner abruptly failing during a hot day. If you didn’t arrange for AC maintenance in spring, you haven’t missed the window: it’s better to do it late than to skip it for a year!

Our VIP Comfort Club makes maintenance easy and affordable, so reach out to us today to schedule this service.

Maintain steady, higher thermostat settings

Moving the thermostat up and down repeatedly during the day will make an AC waste more power. Low settings also don’t make an air conditioner provide cooling any faster—they just make the AC stay on longer. To maximize energy efficiency and alleviate unnecessary strain on the air conditioner, we recommend you raise the thermostat to as high a temperature as your household finds comfortable during the day and leave it there until the evening when you raise the thermostat by 8°F. A good target temperature for comfort and savings during the day is 78°F.

Regularly change the blower filter 

The air conditioner has a blower filter that protects the interior of the system from dust and debris. This filter will clog up after one to three months, and a clogged filter will force the AC to work harder and drive up bills. A clogged filter can eventually cause permanent damage to an AC. If you haven’t changed the AC’s blower filter yet this summer, you probably need to do so now. Create reminders for yourself for when the filter needs to be changed in the future.

Keep the condenser cabinet clear and clean

The outdoor condenser cabinet is where the AC exhausts the heat it drew from the indoor air. If the cabinet is blocked or its condenser coil is dirty, it won’t be able to release enough heat. This will trap heat inside the cabinet and make the AC less efficient, as well as the danger of overheating. To help the AC, see that the area around the cabinet is clear for at least a foot on all sides. Trim any plants that may have grown too close. You can also wash off the cabinet with a hose on low pressure to help it.

You can Rely on Riley! Contact Riley Heating & Air to schedule AC maintenance, repair, or another service. Trusted comfort since 1971.

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