As temperatures rise during the summer months, it’s important to ensure that your home’s air conditioning unit is in good working order. Not only will a well-maintained air conditioning unit keep your home cool and comfortable, it can also help to reduce energy usage and lower utility bills. In this article, we’ll explore some tips for preparing your home’s air conditioning unit for high temperatures during the hot and sticky Cedar Rapids summers.

Schedule Routine Maintenance

One of the most important steps you can take to ensure that your air conditioning unit is ready for summer is to schedule routine maintenance. A professional HVAC technician can inspect your unit, clean the coils, change the air filter, and ensure that it’s operating at peak efficiency. Routine maintenance can help to prevent breakdowns and other issues that could lead to costly repairs, and can help to ensure that your unit is operating at optimal efficiency.

Clean the Outdoor Unit

The outdoor unit of your air conditioning system can become clogged with debris over time, which can impede airflow and reduce efficiency. To clean the outdoor unit, turn off the power to the unit and remove any debris, such as leaves or twigs, from around the unit. Then, use a garden hose to gently spray the fins of the unit, being careful not to damage them. This will help to remove any dirt or debris that may have accumulated on the fins, and can improve airflow and efficiency.

Check the Thermostat

Make sure that your thermostat is functioning properly and set to the desired temperature. If you have a programmable thermostat, consider setting it to adjust the temperature based on your daily routine (we have previously discussed the advantages of Smart thermostats). For example, you can set it to raise the temperature when you’re away from home and lower it when you return. This can help to reduce energy usage and lower utility bills.

Inspect the Ductwork

The ductwork in your home can become damaged over time, which can result in leaks and reduced efficiency. To inspect the ductwork, look for any visible damage or signs of leakage, such as loose connections or cracks. If you notice any issues, consider hiring a professional to inspect and repair the ductwork.

Replace the Air Filter

The air filter in your air conditioning unit should be replaced regularly to ensure optimal efficiency and airflow. A dirty air filter can reduce airflow and strain the unit, leading to higher energy usage and increased utility bills. Make sure to replace the air filter at least once every three months, or more frequently if you have pets or live in a dusty environment.

Consider Upgrading to a High-Efficiency Unit

If your air conditioning unit is old or inefficient, consider upgrading to a high-efficiency unit. Newer units (such as from Trane or Bryant) are designed to operate at higher efficiency levels, which can help to reduce energy usage and lower utility bills. Additionally, some high-efficiency units may qualify for tax credits or other incentives, making them a cost-effective investment in the long run.

Install Window Coverings

Window coverings, such as blinds or curtains, can help to block out the sun and reduce heat gain in your home. This can help to reduce the workload on your air conditioning unit, leading to lower energy usage and lower utility bills. Consider installing reflective window film or blackout curtains to further reduce heat gain.

Preparing your home’s air conditioning unit for high temperatures during the summer is an important step in ensuring that your home is comfortable and energy-efficient. By scheduling routine maintenance, cleaning the outdoor unit, checking the thermostat, inspecting the ductwork, replacing the air filter, considering upgrading to a high-efficiency unit, and installing window coverings, you can help to ensure that your air conditioning unit is operating at peak efficiency and keeping your home cool and comfortable all summer long.If you discover irreparable damage to your unit or system in Cedar Rapids, our team is available 24 hours a day to inspect, replace and install a new one. As an authorized dealer for Trane and Bryant, we focus on high efficiency technology that runs better for less monthly utility cost.