Tuning up your AC unit will help to keep your cooling costs down. A technician should go over every component of your AC unit and make sure that it is running properly. While this should ensure that your AC system is running as efficiently as possible, you can do more to put a dent in your cooling costs. Specifically, you should improve your home's insulation envelope and repair your cooling ducts as necessarily.
Improving Your Delivery System
In a central-air system, you have a set of evaporator coils located in a central location in your home. Ducts then carry the cool air from your coils to the various rooms in your house. The air flowing through these ducts creates outward pressure that with time can create leaks in the seams between sections of ducting. Leaks in your ducts syphon cool air away before it has a chance to cool down your home. The smaller the volume of air is that reaches your home, the longer it takes your cooling system to cool your house down. In fact, leaky ducts can reduce your overall system efficiency by up to 40%. If your ducts are enclosed behind the drywall in your home, you will have to hire duct professionals to inspect your ducts and make repairs as necessary.
Reducing Heat Gain
Even the most efficient AC system in the world is still a reactionary system. In other words, it doesn't start running until your home starts to heat up. Thus, if you want to keep your cooling costs down, you need to take steps to prevent your home from heating up in the first place. Sunlight streaming through your windows is responsible for up to 20% of the heat gain that your AC system has to contend with. UV rays are particularly responsible for heat gain. They can flow right through a window and then heat up the interior of your home. To reduce your cooling costs, you need to find a way to filter out UV rays. Low-e window film can filter out as much as 90% of UV rays and will reduce your cooling costs by up to 23%.
In order to keep your cooling costs as low as possible, you need to broaden your focus. Instead of simply making sure that your AC unit is running as efficiently as possible, you need to inspect the components of your home's insulation envelope and your duct system in order to make sure everything is running at its optimal level. As you make upgrades to your insulation envelope and repair ducts, you will put a big dent in your cooling costs.
For more information, contact companies like Elite Heating, Cooling and Plumbing.