If your home uses central air conditioning, you may be looking for ways to increase the lifespan of this household utility for as long as possible. Air conditioners can be quite expensive, so even getting a few more years out of one can go a long way in cost savings. Here is what you need to do in order to prevent unnecessary AC replacement.
Air Filter Replacement
Many homeowners don't understand how important it is to replace the filter in their HVAC system. Just picture how easy it is to breath on your own with no obstructions, and then to breath with something covering your mouth. Having the path of air obstructed causes you to work much harder than normal to accomplish the same task. The same is true of your air conditioner when it tries to push air through a dirty air filter.
Make sure you replace the air filter according to the user manual. If you have pets in your home that shed, be prepared to replace the filter more often. That's because their loose hair will get into the return air vents and cause the filter to get clogged much faster.
Outdoor Condenser Inspection
Your air conditioner may seem to be running fine, but that doesn't mean you should just let it run without having it inspected. Part of having an AC inspection is to have all parts of the system looked at, which should catch small problems before they turn into big ones. You can replace parts that are wearing down prematurely, which will cause the entire system to work harder as a result. An inspection will also find problems that need to be fixed to prevent overheating and improve airflow, and it will identify leaks in the refrigerant system.
The greatest wear and tear on your air conditioner may be done when you are not even home to enjoy it. Having the air conditioning run while you are away at work not only wastes energy, but will decrease the unit's overall lifespan. Install a programmable thermostat so that you can schedule when the unit turns on and off, which will give the air conditioner a break during the summer.
You can also make small changes, like increasing the temperature on the thermostat a couple degrees so that the unit does not have to run as long to keep your home cool. You may be surprised at the difference a few degrees can make.
If your AC does fail prematurely, reach out to a local HVAC specialist for help with replacement.