Tips To Maximize AC Output

The truth is you can’t.  Air conditioning wasn’t designed to keep up with 100-degree days.  At its peak performance, air conditioners can, at their best, make it 20 degrees cooler inside than outside.  That means if it is 100 degrees outside, the best your ac can do is keep your house a cool 80 degrees.  It won’t help to turn down the ac to make it work harder and your ac isn’t broken. 

But 80 degrees can seem downright unbearable.   The situation isn’t hopeless though, there are some simple actions you can take to make sure your ac is working efficiently and to reduce the heat in your home.  

  1. Replace the air filters in your unit.
  2. Clean or unclog the condensate line.
  3. Remove debris, dirt, and dust from the outside unit.
  4. Avoid using the oven, dryer, and dishwasher during peak heat hours.
  5. Use fans to help circulate the air.
  6. Keep blinds and curtains closed to help keep out the heat.
  7. Unblock and vacuum air vents.

Read more below to find out the particulars of simple air conditioning maintenance.  

First, replace the air filters in your unit once a month or at least every 6 months. Dirt and dust can clog the pores of the filter making it hard to get air through it. A clean air filter allows the cool air to pass through and do its job: cool the house down. The filter can be found near the air handler (the big tower unit inside your house or apartment) or at the return ducts. Simply undo the screws holding it in place check the dimensions of the filter, (usually found on the filter itself) order a new one

air handler in home
air conditioning inspection

Second, clean the condensate line, a pipe that runs from the air handler (big tower) to the outside, sink, or sump pump (it is a little pipe that drips water).  clean the line, find that pipe, take off the access cap, pour 1 cup of bleach into the line and flush water after it.  If the line is clogged (no water is dripping from it or you poured in bleach and didn’t see it come out) you can try a cup of Draino.  This sounds difficult, but the following short video will show you how easy it is to clean.  How to Clean a Condensate Drain Line – Today’s Homeowner

Third, remove debris from the outside AC unit.

Over the year, leaves, sticks, dirt, pollen, dust and other outside things can really clog the unit.  All you need to clean it is a good hose and hose nozzle (no power washer please).  You just spray all the vents and down through the fan on the top to rinse it all away.  

Click here to watch a brief how to video:
Cleaning Air Conditioner Coils (How To Video)

air filter for home

Finally, vacuum and clean those return vents.  Simply use a washcloth to clear the dust from the vent cover and use a vacuum to draw the dust out of the vent.  

Once you have performed these simple steps, you can sit back and enjoy the air.


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