Your air conditioning unit plays a big role in keeping your home comfortable, especially as the summer months heat up. Air conditioning helps us stay cool and comfortable all year long. This is especially important for members of your family who are sensitive to heat, such as small children, seniors, and pets. AC servicing near me can help your air conditioning work at its best, but there are also some tips and tricks you can try yourself. Learn how to improve the efficiency of your AC unit with these 20 simple updates. Patch Air Leaks It’s hard to keep a constant temperature in a leaky or drafty house. Doors, windows, vents, and other openings to the outside can allow air to flow in and out of your home. Consider air sealing your home, especially if you live in an older building. Air sealing can reduce leaks and help your unit perform at its best. Insulate Your Home After you’ve patched any air leaks, take a look at your insulation. Modern insulation allows for a consistent temperature throughout your home, particularly in your attic. Attics tend to be hot spots because hot air rises. You can add new insulation if your attic hasn’t been properly fitted. You can also spread out existing insulation to evenly cover your attic’s surfaces. Keep Out The Sun Direct sunlight heats your home. East-facing and west-facing windows allow lots of warmth into your home, but any unshaded window will make temperatures rise. Look for ways to cover your windows and keep the sunlight out. Bushes, trees, shades, awnings, and curtains can all help your home stay cool. Upgrade Lightbulbs and Appliances Traditional lights and appliances are inefficient and can waste electricity. Older model incandescent lightbulbs transfer most of their electricity into heat, not light. One lightbulb might not seem like much, but an entire house full of incandescent lights will be unnecessarily hot. Similarly, older appliances like your washing machine or refrigerator tend to waste power as well. You can cool your home and reduce your utility costs by upgrading to modern, energy-efficient models. Rearrange Appliances If one room in your home already runs hot, try not to keep your heavy-energy appliances in that room. Laundry appliances, computer systems, and entertainment devices can cause a space to heat up. These electronics add to the heat load in this area, forcing your AC unit to work even harder. Put these large appliances in other parts of your home if possible. Retrofit Your AC System Retrofitting describes adding new features or technology to your existing AC system. Retrofitting can be an efficient way to update your current AC unit without completely replacing it. If your system is well-maintained but uses a lot of energy, it might be a good candidate for a retrofit. Program Your Thermostat Take the human error out of your AC system and use a programable thermostat. You don’t need to worry about adjusting the temperature when you schedule changes on your thermostat. These systems allow you to set specific ranges for daytime and overnight so you can maintain an efficient temperature. Some modern thermostats even let you monitor your home remotely through an app. If you’re not sure how to get the most from your thermostat, schedule an AC tune-up near me for help from an expert. Use Energy Efficient Equipment Today’s AC systems are increasingly energy-efficient. These units can cool your home using less electricity than in the past. If you’re considering retrofitting your AC unit or upgrading some of its equipment, make sure to choose an energy-efficient model for the best cooling results. Change Dirty Filters Whenever you schedule an AC tune-up near me, your technician will take a look at your filters. This is a relatively easy task and something you can tackle on your own. Dirty filters don’t allow as much air to flow from the air conditioner into your home, so changing your filters will improve AC performance. You can clean and replace dirty filters or simply buy a new filter for a fresh start. Clean Your Vents Your home’s vents allow air to flow throughout the house. If your vents are dirty, dusty, or clogged, then your air conditioner will struggle to send enough air through. Clean your vents on a regular basis to help your HVAC system work its best. You can uncover all the vents to do a deep clean, or simply vacuum the outer metal guards for a quick improvement. Open Every Vent Louvers are the controls that let air flow from your vents into a room. Many people think they’re improving their HVAC efficiency by closing vents to rooms they don’t use. However, remember that your vents are designed as a system. You can cause problems by closing off vents. Keep your louvers open for the best performance. Check For Duct Problems AC ducts run throughout your home, carrying air from the main unit to your rooms. If your air doesn’t seem to be flowing efficiently, take a look at your ducts to see if any are crushed, blocked, or restricted. Ducts in attics, basements, and crawl spaces can also become disconnected. If you don’t go into these spaces very often, it’s hard to find the problem. Clean Around Your Unit You can improve your AC efficiency by clearing out space around your unit. Don’t allow plants to grow or trash to gather around your unit. These blockages will hurt your performance. You can also dust your unit a few times a year to keep it clean. Inside your home, make sure your HVAC vents aren’t hidden behind doors, furniture, or anything else that could block the airflow. Schedule Regular Maintenance Everyone has called for AC servicing near me during an emergency, but you should also book seasonal preventative maintenance. Regular tune-ups can catch small issues before they turn into big problems. Maintenance also prepares your unit for the coming season and helps you avoid costly emergency repairs. Adjust Your Temperature Settings Get better performance out of your cooling system by adjusting the temperature, one degree at a time. Most people can’t tell the difference between 72 degrees and 73 degrees, but this small change accounts for a big utility cost. You can improve your home’s efficiency by setting your thermostat one degree closer to the temperature outside. This adjustment allows you to remain comfortable while using less power. Turn Up The Temperature When You’re Not Home You can cut costs and improve efficiency by raising the temperature in your home when you’re not there. Set the thermostat to a higher temperature when you’re in the office, running errands, or going out for dinner. You can drop the AC back to a more comfortable range as soon as you get home, or use a programmable thermostat to make this change for you. If you have pets, make sure to keep the thermostat at a comfortable range for them and provide plenty of water while you’re away. Turn Off Electronics Many electronic devices continue to pull a small amount of electricity when they’re plugged in, even if they’re not being actively used. Since many appliances release heat into the air, this phenomenon warms up your home while also driving up your utility bill. Lower your costs and make it easier for your AC to do its job by turning off and unplugging electronics in between uses. Listen For Strange Sounds If you’re like most people, you’re familiar with the standard clinks, hums, and clicks your air conditioner makes. Learn what’s normal for your unit and pay attention to any unusual noises. Different sounds can be a sign your AC unit is having trouble. It might be time for an AC tune-up near me if you notice strange noises coming from your unit. Don’t Use Your Hottest Appliances On Warm Days Major appliances like ovens and clothes driers can make your home hotter. These systems are designed to heat their contents, so they can also make rooms warm. You can help your AC system by avoiding your hot appliances on warm days. Consider grilling food outside or drying clothes on a line instead. Clean Your Condensate Drain Line Your HVAC system has a drain line that can clog over time. You can usually find your drain either beneath your indoor unit or under the outdoor condenser unit. Check this line for clogs and clean it when necessary to help your air conditioner keep working optimally. Keeping Your Home Cool Like many other systems in your home, your AC unit will work its best with some basic maintenance and care. Luckily, there are many ways for homeowners to improve their performance. Use these tips to keep your home cool and your HVAC system efficient so you can be comfortable all year long.