As a responsible homeowner who cares about your finances, the environment, and your community, one of the best things you can do to give back to yourself, your home, and your community during the hot summer months is to choose to air condition your home responsibly. If you don’t know much about air conditioning and the potential risks that it poses to your home, wallet, and environment, you might not know where to start in this process. Thankfully, we can help you with some key tips on how you might be able to air condition your home responsibly for years to come.
Get Professional Installation Services
The first step to making it possible for you to air condition your home responsibly is calling an AC installation company to professionally install your air conditioner. One mistake that many homeowners make is thinking that they can do everything to maintain their homes on their own. While there are some projects that you may be able to complete as a do-it-yourself project such as replacing the covers on lightswitches or patching up a small hole in the wall, you don’t want to rely on minimal DIY expertise in the home improvement area to install an air conditioner. There are many safety and environmental risks that the average homeowner doesn’t know. With these risks in mind, it’s best to leave installing an air conditioning unit or air conditioning forced air system to the professionals.
Outside of the safety risks that air conditioners impose, even the lightest window units tend to be kind of heavy. For those who are not physically strong or capable of lifting a window AC unit, calling in a team of professionals to install the AC unit might be the most responsible thing you can do. All of us need to know our limits and honor them. Installing an air conditioning window unit might seem like a really simple task and, on some level, it is relatively straightforward. Still, if you don’t have the strength or ability to lift an AC unit into the window, you could end up hurting yourself, others, or your home and surrounding properties if you don’t take care to install the window unit responsibly.
If you have a hard time gripping the unit and it falls out of an open window, you may be liable for the damage or injuries that it causes. Additionally, you could damage the unit and lose money on it if you drop it from the window. You may also face criminal charges depending on the outcome of dropping the window unit and even eviction. To avoid all of these consequences of being irresponsible and testing your limits, you can leave it to people who know what they’re doing when they install a window unit.
Plan for Maintenance
Another key aspect of caring for an air conditioner and choosing to air condition your home responsibly is putting in the work to schedule regular AC maintenance. While you may think that the only type of maintenance your AC unit needs is a quick dust or change of the filter every once in a while, most AC units need more maintenance than the bare minimum to run in a way that is optimal for the environment and for your household’s family members. When you buy an AC unit or install an air conditioning system, you should have at least one HVAC maintenance number at your disposal. This way, you can have someone in your corner to call if your AC system runs into an emergency.
On top of logistically planning for how you will handle an AC emergency or what schedule you will follow to maintain your AC, you should financially plan for maintaining your AC. Setting some money aside for repairs, maintenance, and more is part of responsibly operating and owning an air conditioner. If you don’t have the money to maintain an AC, you don’t have the money to own and run an AC. While it can be financially draining and frustrating to put more money into savings for maintaining your home, it’s a necessary step. Otherwise, you’ll end up scrambling to fix your AC and come up with the funds to afford it if your AC unit breaks down in the middle of a heat wave.
Keep a Local AC Company on Call
Another facet of trying to air condition your home responsibly is keeping tabs on an AC company that’s close to you and saving their contact information for a rainy day. Even though you probably don’t want to think about what might happen in the event of an AC emergency, it’s crucial to plan for these kinds of issues before they happen. When you have an AC company that is local to you on call, you’ll be less stressed and better prepared if and when an emergency happens. The AC company will appreciate that they have a regular customer who knows that they can trust them to show up for them in an emergency. Likewise, you’ll appreciate not having to do your research amid an AC problem. It leads to a win-win situation that benefits all parties if you think about it.
Consider Installing Ductless Mini-Splits
As you learn how to air condition your home responsibly, you’ve probably come across certain modifications that some air conditioning services may recommend. One popular way to save money and energy for homeowners on air conditioning costs is by installing ductless mini splits. Some of the major advantages of installing ductless mini splits include the financial benefit and greater efficiency for your HVAC system. In terms of the benefits and worthwhile qualities of ductless mini-splits, youngshomecomfort.com shares that “Mini splits on average last about 20 years. If you consider how much money you can save on electricity and maintenance you will see that going with a mini-split system can be a great decision. Adding a mini-split system will also increase the value of your home should you ever decide to sell it.”
You might not even be thinking of what would happen if you decided to sell your home or how much the resale value of your home may be, little improvements like this benefit you, the potential buyer, and, of course, your bank account down the road. Part of being a responsible air conditioner owner and homeowner is thinking about long-term investments in your home. It also means sacrificing some of your current funds to benefit your future home ownership journey.
Replace Your Air Conditioner Within 10 Years
One of the best ways you can air condition your home responsibly is by scheduling a new system for HVAC installation within a ten-year window. While some air conditioning units won’t last for a decade, others may seem like they run on a functional level for at least a decade. Once you hit the ten-year mark, it’s time to replace your AC unit or system. Although some AC systems such as the ductless mini-split AC systems could last upwards of two decades, most AC units and systems don’t have that kind of longevity to offer AC owners.
While every AC unit is different and some AC units may be taxed more by certain types of climates, the average window AC unit lasts a decade. For portable AC units, you can expect to have them running smoothly for at least five years but no more than ten years. When you have a single whole-home AC unit for a residential dwelling, you can probably expect to get no more than fifteen years of use out of it. In a home that is maintained regularly and insulated well, you should be able to expect central air-source heat pumps to last at least fifteen years or even closer to an excess of twenty years. Some central AC systems only last five years in taxing climates.
Before you decide on what AC system is right for your home, you should consider how your environment and other factors may impact the lifespan of the unit. Speaking with qualified AC professionals and HVAC service workers may help you get a better idea of how long AC units and systems last in your region if the HVAC professionals usually operate in your area. They may also be able to give you tips for maintaining your air conditioning system or unit so that you don’t have to replace it any sooner than you could anticipate based on the average lifespan of the unit or system for air conditioning.
Prepare Your AC Unit for Winter
If you want to air condition your home responsibly, you’ll need to think about how your AC services will be affected not only in the blistering heat of the summer but also in the frigid temperatures of winter. As the temperatures drop and snow starts to fall, you should take some key steps to ensure that your AC is safe and protected until it’s ready to use again in the late spring months. There are several ways you can prepare your AC unit to tackle winter, but you should think about it before winter hits so you’ll be ready if the temperatures start to freeze up sooner than you anticipated as a homeowner.
First, you’ll want to make sure that the area around your AC unit is free of clutter and debris. This will make it easy to access when it’s time to cool off your house again in the spring and summer. Next, you should clean the exterior of your AC unit. You can do this by using a ladder with a spotter if your AC unit is on the second floor. You also may be able to hire professional cleaners to get the job done if it’s more complicated or risky than what you’re comfortable doing.
Once the exterior of your AC is clean, you can cover the AC unit with a tarp or other appropriate material to keep cool air from entering your home. This will also help insulate your home and prevent hot air from escaping. If your AC unit operates in connection with your thermostat, it’s time to switch your thermostat from cooling the house to heating it. Otherwise, your HVAC system might not warm your house since it will “think” that your house is cool enough according to its current settings. Outside of the winter months, you should schedule regular maintenance on your AC unit so that it’s ready to go in the summer and spring.
Get AC Repairs Promptly
While you may be tempted to put off calling your local AC repair, you must schedule maintenance as soon as you notice that your AC unit or system needs it if you hope to air condition your home responsibly. Waiting to fix your AC can lead to an early replacement. To avoid paying for a new AC before it’s the right time, you should repair your AC as soon as you see a need for a repair. Your AC unit will thank you and so will your local AC repair team.
Ask Your HVAC Specialist About Getting a Dehumidifier
If the air in your home is too humid, you can call an HVAC contractor to resolve that. Getting a dehumidifier can resolve some problems associated with humid air. It can also make you feel more comfortable in your home.
Keep Your Air Ducts Clean
To air condition your home responsibly, you should schedule an HVAC duct cleaning often. This will take care of dust and particles that accumulate in your AC system. Unclean air ducts present a health risk, so it’s best to maintain them.
Set Your Thermostat Responsibly
While you may want to blast cool air, you should air condition your home responsibly and set your AC at or higher than the recommendation of air conditioning companies. Your AC unit will require more energy if the temperature is set too high. For the environment and your wallet, don’t make your AC run all day.
To air condition your home responsibly, follow our tips above. While this isn’t a complete list, it’ll help you get started. Anyone can air condition responsibly, so you shouldn’t be put off by how long our list of suggestions seems! The environment and your wallet will thank you for these changes.