Help your AC work better in summer

With some simple moves you can help your air conditioner work more efficiently, cooling your home while keeping a lid on electricity costs.


• Start with the basics: Don’t let hot air inside the home. Yes, you want fresh air from the outside, but watch the temperature to make sure you’re not bringing in hot outside air for the system to cool and dehumidify at your expense. In other words, watch the doors and windows.

• Make sure your filter is clean. This is the single cheapest, easiest thing you can do to keep the system humming at optimal efficiency summer and winter.

• When you leave the house, move the desired temperature up, but do not turn off the system. Turning off the system is counterproductive.

The system must work harder once you turn it back on. And it will be battling not just the hot air but the humidity that grows when the AC is off.

A good investment would be a thermostat that you can operate remotely and which monitors your usage.

• Here’s another step that backfires: Some people mistakenly think they should close registers in unused rooms.

Your system is designed to move air through all the vents, but shutting off registers creates a bottleneck, forcing the AC system to work harder to distribute the air to registers that are open.

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