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The Worst Ways to Use an Air Conditioner

Published on: May 18, 2018

IMPORTANT NOTE: . Our company is located in British Columbia, Canada. If you are reading this article in another location, we hope you enjoy the information, but unfortunately we cannot service you. 

Summer has arrived early this year! The sun is shining, it’s warm out, and the heat is on. That means many people are already dragging out their fans and dusting off their A/C units in order to keep their homes cool and to chill out.

Did you know, however, that there are terrible ways one can use their air conditioning? It’s true! Here are some major no-no’s that are worth knowing about, as well as solutions for how best to stay cool.

1: Placing Obstacles in Front of Vents

Just because you got new carpet for your home’s renovations doesn’t mean it can go anywhere. Likewise, certain obstacles such as furniture place over a vent where cool air from the A/C system is supposed to go will cause problems. Without an opening for air to flow through, this can result in limited air circulation which means your room will not be cooled off properly.

2: Forcing the Unit to Run 24/7

We know how hot summer is, but there’s being smart with your air conditioning by letting it run when it’s necessary and then letting it run every minute of every hour of every day. This is not a smart use of your A/C! Not only will it shorten the unit’s life span, but also it’s going to cost you precious pennies.

3: Lowering the Temperature

Did you know it’s actually a terrible idea to lower the temperature on your A/C? Doing so can cause the unit (if it’s central A/C) to freeze up, especially if it reaches below 20 degrees Celsius, leading to a damaged compressor. It may be tempting to do so if you come home to hot, stuffy air, and want the room to cool faster. But this is not a smart way to use the A/C. Even after it’s reached the ideal temperature, the unit will keep working and thus the life span will be shortened.

4: Having Heat-generating Units on Also

Appliances that generate heat such as stoves, ovens, washers, and dryers all generate heat in order to do their jobs. This can actually prevent the A/C unit from doing its job, as the A/C will work harder to cool a temperature that keeps on escalating. The end result? You guessed it—a shorter life span on the A/C.

What to Do Instead

To ensure your A/C lasts as long as you want it to, try applying these actions to your daily life this summer:

  • Keep the temperature above 20 degrees Celsius to prevent icing up the coils.
  • Wait a while before turning on the A/C; sometimes it only takes a few minutes for our bodies to adjust to a room’s temperature.
  • Remove any obstacles, such as furniture, from the vents.
  • Keep your blinds and curtains over the windows during the hottest times of the day and only open the blinds when it’s cooler out.
  • Close the vents off before you leave for work, and close the closet doors too so that these spaces don’t suck up the cool air.
  • If you simply must let cool air flow to help you sleep at night, the A/C unit should run at a much lower capacity and be timed so that it shuts off when you fall asleep.
  • If hot, stuffy rooms are a real problem where you live, consider getting programmable or smart A/C instead. That way, ideal temperature is guaranteed.
  • Limit your use of heat-based appliances so that the A/C doesn’t work harder than it ought to.
  • Keep your units clean and well-maintained. If you can’t remember the last time either maintenance or cleaning was done, you may want to call in a professional.

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