20 Apr 2015 Time for that AC summer tune up
Summer is officially on its way, which means temperatures are steadily rising. Sometimes it’s hard to balance comfort and cost, but staying relaxed and cool in your home on the hottest days of the year without worrying about energy bills going through the roof is possible.
One of the easiest things you can do to stay cool this summer is having a professional tune up your air conditioning unit. Over the course of 12 months, a home’s heating and cooling system will easily run thousands of hours. Left unserviced, the average unit will lose 5 percent of its efficiency each year from dust and dirt accumulation as well as regular wear and tear.
Conway Corporation recommends customers have a preventative maintenance tune up on their central air conditioning unit every year to keep it working efficiently. Having your home’s cooling system serviced is one of the best things you can do — both from a comfort perspective as well as a financial one. Plus, small problems can be detected long before they turn into big, expensive problems when temperatures are likely at their worst.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, a checkup of your home’s HVAC system can extend its life by several years as well as save you up to 10 percent a month on energy bills. On average, a tune up will cost $70 to $100, which easily pays for itself in monthly efficiency savings. Plus, a well-looked-after unit will last up to 15 years, compared to seven years for ones that are left ignored. Extending the life of your unit will save up to $5,000 in replacement costs.
Conway Corporation Energy Smart professionals recommend scheduling a local, certified HVAC contractor to perform a system tune up that includes four basic steps:
Measure airflow of the system to test capacity and efficiency. Most air conditioners require 400 cubic feet per minute of air to operate to capacity.
Clean the condenser. The outdoor unit should be sprayed with a heaving foaming cleanser that soaks for 10 to 15 minutes before rinsing.
Measure indoor and outdoor conditions including indoor wet bulb, indoor dry bulb and outdoor dry bulb. After all measurements are taken, they should be plotted on a sliding chart to determine super heat that will set the proper refrigerant charge.
Adjust refrigerant charge. One of the most expensive repairs for units is a refrigerant leak.
Homeowners can also play their part in keeping the system in good working condition by changing the filters on their heating, ventilation and cooling system four times a year. This helps to keep the system running smoothly and improves the home’s airflow providing better air quality and less temperature fluctuation.
Conway Corporation’s Energy Smart program can help you balance increasing demands for electricity with our commitment to providing affordable rates. This month, Energy Smart is giving away an air conditioner tune up to one Conway Corporation customer. Customers can register to win online at conwaycorp.com/actuneup. Entries must be complete by Wednesday, May 20, and the winner will be announced Friday, May 22. The winner must be a homeowner in the Conway Corporation service area.
To learn more about Conway Corporation’s Energy Smart program, contact Conway Corporation at 501.450.6000 or visit conwaycorp.com/services/electric and click on the Energy Smart tab.