There’s a reason everyone loves summer. With long days and comfortably warm nights, it seems like there’s always some festival or fun event going on. But in North Carolina, those warm temperatures quickly become sweltering; the average temperature in July tops out at almost 90°!
As the temperature goes up, your electrical bills increase commensurately. Your HVAC system has to work harder to keep your air cool, and your plumbing system suffers the brunt of all that lawn-watering and sprinkler-frolicking. Want to make sure you’ve got extra money when the ice cream truck comes to your neighborhood? Use these energy-saving tricks to perform basic AC maintenance DIY tasks, and save money.
AC Maintenance: DIY Checks and Fixes
While serious HVAC issues can’t be fixed by watching an AC maintenance DIY video, there are plenty of quick tests and checks you can perform to make sure you don’t have any issues coming down the pike.
- Check your AC coils and air filters for excess dirt or wear. If it looks dirty, clean your HVAC system
- Clean or replace your air filters every month
- Vacuum around vents, basements, crawlspaces, windows, and doors
- Inspect your attic for proper insulation
- Check your drain pan for signs of excess moisture
None of these issues are emergencies, and all are easy to fix with some simple AC maintenance DIY. Remember, the whole point of an HVAC system is to circulate and distribute air around your home. Nothing will prevent that faster than dirt and moisture. A healthy and efficient air conditioning system should be as clean as possible.
Routine Seasonal Maintenance
Like any large piece of machinery, scheduled maintenance is the best way to reduce costs and avoid or delay buying a replacement. Routine check-ups from a professional will always be cheaper than a lump sum payment for a new system, but there are some AC maintenance DIY tasks you can perform. Use this checklist as a guide.
Your HVAC system should undergo basic maintenance seasonally. Ideally, you’ll be performing biannual maintenance – once before the winter season, and once before the summer season. That will have your HVAC system in peak condition during those especially busy times.
Good management is key to energy conservation, whether you’re looking after your electrical bill or an entire nature reserve. Start by installing a programmable thermostat so you can program your air conditioning to turn on and off at certain times. The proper settings can save you money.
Are you going out of town on summer vacation? Turn your AC (and water heater) down, but not off. While changing the thermostat setting conserves energy while you are away, it could end up costing you more if you have to dramatically cool your home off when you return.
Be aware of the humidity levels, temperature, and airflow in different parts of your house. If your system only works well in one part of your house, it’s not efficient or effective. A zoned heating and cooling system might be a better option.
AC Maintenance DIY Installations
Technological advancements and rising eco-consciousness have led to the emergence of relatively inexpensive, easy-to-install products that will drastically improve your home’s ability to retain cold air during the summer. You can install double pane windows to reduce energy loss throughout the year. Add a reflective roof coating or new shingles that will reflect the sun’s rays and keep your home cooler. Consider replacing incandescent bulbs with LED bulbs, which give off less heat and use less energy.
While cracked and frozen pipes are usually seen in winter, you don’t get a summer vacation from plumbing problems. North Carolina sees the highest temperatures in July – but also the most precipitation. This can lead to flash floods and overflowing sewage drains or water pipes.
Summer fun means dirty clothes, and dirty clothes mean stress on your washing machine. Check your washing machine hoses for bulges, leaks, and cracks, and be sure to remove dryer lint regularly. Washing machine hoses should be replaced approximately every three years.
These AC maintenance DIY tips and tricks are easy enough for anyone to do. If your HVAC system needs a more major overhaul contact Newcomb and Company today. We know everything there is to know about heating, cooling, and plumbing here in North Carolina.