As soon as we feel oppressive heat in Columbia, Maryland homes, our initial reaction may be to turn up the air conditioner. But increasing its temperature setting doesn’t actually make the air colder; rather, it causes it to heat up quicker, using energy more rapidly that could otherwise have been spent cooling your home. This misstep leads to many misconceptions regarding proper use of air conditioning units.
To make the air conditioner warmer, you would typically turn it up.
The Truth About Air Conditioner Settings
Once an air conditioner’s temperature reading exceeds that of its ambient environment, it begins heating. Therefore, to “turn up the air conditioner” actually means to increase its cooling function by decreasing its temperature setting gradually – gradually making your space more comfortable without adding to your electric bill – further decreasing as necessary until cooling stops working altogether. Heat tolerance levels vary among individuals so the lower you go before the cooling function no longer functions effectively.
Energy Consumption and Proper AC Usage
Your AC unit consumes more energy as time goes on to cool your home, so turning it completely off before leaving for work will result in higher power bills as the unit still uses energy trying to cool a home that has warmed considerably, then has to work even harder when you return home.
Air Conditioner Speed and Efficiency
An air conditioner operates at the same speed regardless of its temperature setting; increasing it does not make it cooler; in fact, increasing its setting will speed up its warming up process. Remember, an air conditioner’s primary purpose is to both cool and dehumidify your space. If the temperature fluctuates by more than 20 degrees, however, its ability to do both decreases significantly; at that point it must work harder and more frequently to cool your environment resulting in faster wear-and-tear and shorter lifespan for the system.
Maximizing Cooling with Ceiling Fans
Assuming your air conditioner can’t provide all-around cooling capabilities, pairing it with a ceiling fan may provide the solution to creating an air-conditioned home that is cool, comfortable and energy efficient. Ceiling fans are an effective way of spreading cool air throughout your home and are particularly helpful when set so the airflow goes upward, reaching every corner and crevice of the space.
Improving Efficiency and Comfort: Professional Consultation
As well as keeping energy bills under control, this simple strategy can also ensure greater comfort throughout the year. If you have concerns about the efficiency of your air conditioning unit, consulting a professional is often best to assess it and recommend the most efficient solutions. Reach out to your local HVAC contractor now and set up an appointment, they’d be more than happy to answer any of your queries and even install a programmable thermostat which will save money on electric bills while increasing the effectiveness of your air conditioning system.