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Stay Cool This Summer with the “SET IT AND FORGET IT” Rule

“Set it and forget it

Set your thermostat to a comfortable temperature and leave it alone. It’s much easier for your AC to control humidity when it’s left to a set temperature.  Every time you turn the temperature way up or turn the thermostat off, your AC needs to work overtime to dehumidify and get your home back up to a comfortable temperature. Not only does this increase the wear and tear on your system, but will result in higher energy consumption as well.

Letting Your Air Conditioner Rest

In these hot months, you may have had your air conditioning running none stop. To help expand it’s lifespan and keep it’s efficiency up, give it some resting time. You can usually find how often and for how long you should let your air conditioner rest in it’s manual/guide.

An Easy Way To Extend Air Conditioning Into Your New Home Addition

 

We all love our home, and sometimes, this love entails adding a completely new addition so we can love it a little bit more – whether it be a patio, guest room or a new rec room for you and your friends to watch the playoffs.

If the room is located on a warmer side of the house, you wouldn’t think twice of having to heat it, but it is easy to overlook the fact that it will probably need to be cooled. Now, if you haven’t installed some form of air conditioning, you’re in luck because you can go ahead and install one for your entire house, including the new room.

However, if you have a pre-existing central air conditioning system, extending that system can become a real chore. Additional ductwork can lower your ceiling with a bulky duct system, which is not only not aesthetically pleasing but a completely unpleasant experience. When you install new ductwork, you have to work around the current system and conditions, and the materials used might not be accessible for additions.

If you decide to go down this road, you’ll need to not only locate and get into your current ductwork, but somehow access it in such a way as to extend it. Then, you’ll have to find a way to make sure both cool and hot air (if your furnace is incorporated into the duct system) does not pass by the new passage. A fan or boaster might need to be installed to force air flow through the new passage, and you’ll have to check to make sure your current heating and cooling systems have the necessary power to cool or heat your home’s addition.

If your addition is something more of a guest house or indoor garden shelter, expanding your current system is virtually impossible. Unless you have the expenditures for a second air conditioning unit, another method that may work best for you – in terms of energy and cost efficiency – is known as a ductless mini split.

A ductless mini split is made up of an outdoor unit, and usually one – but sometimes multiple indoor units. The indoor unit is placed high up in the room and is remote controlled. What’s wonderful about them is if you have multiple units in separate rooms, you don’t have to adjust one unit for multiple room comfort – rather you can adjust a single unit for that specific room. To put it simply: you can have comfort the way you want it. Some models even work backwards, so to speak, allowing a room to be heated on an otherwise cool night.

What You Need to Know About the SEER Number on Your Air Conditioner

SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio and means just that. This rating is supposed to help you understand the energy efficiency that your air conditioner runs on.  There is also a seasonal energy efficiency ratio for furnaces, although these are typically referred to as AFUE standing for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency.

These ratings are dependent on your cooling or heating systems operating efficiency and each rating is defined clearly by the Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration Institute to help you in making your long term choices when purchasing new air conditioners. A lot of the older air conditioning systems have a SEER rating of 6 or sometimes even less, now a days, or since January of 2006, the energy efficiency rating of new air conditioners must meet or exceed 13.

The SEER rating is calculated by tracking the amount of cooling your system (outdoor compressor & indoor unit) is able to produce for each unit of energy that it uses. If it needs to consume less energy to put out the same amount of cool air as another conditioner, then you are saving energy and in turn, having to pay less on your utility bills. Although a higher SEER rated air conditioner may be more expensive at initial purchase, it will save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

If it really is that much better for the environment, and saves that much more money, why are all models not higher SEER ratings? Just like I mentioned above, governments have pushed to make this possible. That is why in Canada; in order qualify for the Energy Star the unit must be 14 or greater. How manufacturers get their models ratings high all depends on the components and special features they include in the units. That is why you will pay more for a higher seasonal energy efficiency ratio as it is made up of higher end and more elaborate components.

So it is all pretty self explanatory once you know the basics, the higher your SEER rating, the more energy & money you will save. On an annual basis, even moving from an 8 SEER to a 13 SEER you will save approximately 32%. If you are upgrading to a 21 you can save almost 60%! Check out the air conditioner savings chart we have put together to help you determine how much you could be saving monthly!