While our annual calendar is full of many unique and oddball holidays like April’s National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day, there is another holiday closer to our heart. Every July 17th, we celebrate National Air Conditioner Day! Especially for people living in Pensacola, air conditioners are something we often take for granted.
In fact, just last summer, our own air conditioner unit decided to stop working on one of the first 90 degree days of the year! As we watched the temperature inside our home climb, it occurred to us... “The air conditioner is such an underappreciated tool!” It’s true that it’s hard to appreciate things until they’re no longer there.
Our goal today is to help you learn all about your air conditioner unit, especially how to keep it running smoothly so that you don’t end up sweltering in the Florida heat.
Best Practices for Maintaining Your Air Conditioner Unit
The single best way to keep your air conditioner running well is easy… maintenance! Not only is daily, monthly, and yearly maintenance of your air conditioner unit the least expensive option, it also saves you tons of money in the long run.
The easiest item on your maintenance checklist is to make sure to clean and replace your air conditioner filters regularly. The standard filter needs to be changed or at least cleaned once a month.
Filters that are in homes inhabited by smokers, those with pets, or those simply located in dustier parts of Florida should be checked even more regularly. Other, less standard sizes should be serviced by your HVAC technician annually.
In addition to routine filter maintenance, make sure to also check the exterior portion of the air conditioner unit. This includes trimming back any grass and plants and remove any other leaves and debris from the outside of the unit. Your HVAC service technician should also make sure to check inside of the unit for wear and tear on the unit’s coils and coil fins.
How To Know When To Replace Your Air Conditioner Unit
Even with routine maintenance, there may come a day when you’ll need to replace your unit. Awareness of those signs can help you have some head’s up and allow you to start saving money before an emergency happens.
Air conditioner units generally last around 10 to 15 years. If your unit is older than that and needs anything more than minor repairs, it’s usually more cost-efficient to just replace it.
Even with some newer units, depending on the diagnosis, it’s important to balance the cost of repairing the unit against the cost just replacing it. It might not always be the most cost-efficient to repair it. Also, make sure to check out your air conditioner unit’s Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (also known as its SEER rating).
Cooling down homes during a standard Pensacola summer isn’t easy and, with a SEER rating smaller than 13 (your HVAC repair technician will be able to calculate it), your unit should be replaced with a much more energy-efficient one.
Make Sure to Have Your HVAC Technician Clean Out Your Air Ducts
Air duct cleaning is the last important piece of the puzzle. This type of cleaning should be performed by an HVAC repair technician, and it is equally as important to extend the life and maintain the health of your unit as any other maintenance.
Besides just helping your air conditioner unit power through the Florida summer, cleaning the air ducts in your home also stops the growth of the different types of molds that grow there.
Mold loves three things - darkness, water accumulation, and humidity - which makes your ducts the perfect area for it. In addition, mold spores can spread quickly to the rest of your house by moving through the vents. Mold is a major health hazard for your whole family, even the furry members. Have your HVAC repair technician perform an air duct cleaning at least once a year. So, do you know more about your air conditioner unit now?
With the temperatures in Pensacola only starting to increase, learning how to best take care of your unit, what services to ask your HVAC repair technician to perform, and when it’s time to just buy a new unit can help you save both time and money. Make sure you share this blog on your social media as well as giving a shout out and a hearty thank you to any HVAC technicians in your life as well! They can literally save your life.