It’s storm season in Florida, and thankfully we’re going to escape the damage from Hurricane Michael. But this is a good warning to everybody about how important it is to be prepared for the change in the weather. And that change in the weather means—well, it’s still going to be warm most of the time. This is Tampa Bay, after all.
Although we recommend you have heating maintenance done during the fall in case of cooler weather periods, we want to make sure you pay attention to your central air conditioning in Clearwater, FL, because you’ll still need to rely on it during the coming months.
We have some tips to help you keep from paying too much through the fall on home cooling.
Know when you really need the AC
During the height of the summer, the air conditioner will just be on most of the time. You know you need it when the weather is hot and humid. But as the fall comes around, you may find yourself locked in the habit of running the air conditioner just as much as you did in summer, even though it isn’t necessary.
Our recommendation is to set the thermostat so the air conditioner won’t come on unless the indoor temperature rises to 80°F or above. If your home is well-ventilated, and you dress lightly, you shouldn’t need the AC running at any lower temperature. (Make sure when the air conditioner does come on that you close all windows and doors for better energy efficiency.)
Fan-only mode is your friend
A central air conditioner contains a blower fan that moves air past the evaporator coil, where it is cooled, and then into the ventilation system. The fan can work on its own, without the outside compressor running to send refrigerant through the coil. Putting the AC into fan-only mode helps create breezes around the house without needing to put so much power to the compressor, which is the biggest source of energy use in the air conditioner. When you only need a bit of cooling, the fan can often take care of it.
Ceiling fans are another big help
We strongly recommend homes in the area have ceiling fans installed, since they help tremendously with keeping people cool. The fans don’t actually cool the air; what they do is help people’s body release heat faster by blowing away the heat envelope around them. Even though a room with a fan isn’t cooler, the people inside it will feel cooler, often by 8°F. This takes a lot of work off the air conditioner.
The whole-house dehumidifier difference
Another way to keep a house feeling cooler is to control the humidity levels. High humidity in a home causes people to feel hotter because the moisture traps heat in the human body. A whole-house dehumidifier installed into the ventilation system will lower the humidity to a balanced 45%, which is the ideal zone between too humid and too dry. The air conditioner will need to run much less often when humidity isn’t making the heat feel worse.
You can trust to our professionals for assistance with services like dehumidifier installation or for repairs that will prevent your AC from draining more power than it should.