Let’s face it, as Las Vegas residents we’re no strangers to heatwaves and extreme weather. Just last year the summer was especially brutal with temperatures hitting a record 116 degrees! It’s enough to make you sweat just thinking about it. But before you reach for the thermostat to turn your AC up to the max, read our article about keeping your AC running during a heatwave. We’ll give you some tips that will not only help you to keep your home cooler but also ensure your AC isn’t put under unnecessary strain when the temperature rises.
Wait, Why Can’t My AC Cope With a Heatwave?
Even the best air conditioning systems in the world aren’t built to cope with temperatures of 100+ degrees. Most systems are designed to cool within 20 degrees of the temperature outside. That means if it’s 100 outside and your AC is getting to 80 or below, it’s doing a great job. If you’ve noticed that your older system isn’t able to get to this kind of temperature, you may need to consider a new more energy-efficient, and reliable AC.
Switch the Fan to On
Switching your fan to the ‘on’ position instead of setting it to ‘auto’ can help your system to circulate more air throughout your home and balance the temperature in rooms that are too cool or too hot.
Set Your Thermostat Higher
While it might be tempting to turn up your AC to cool your home, this approach could be costing you more than you might think. That’s because every time your AC is turned up, it’s fighting an uphill battle to cool your home down. Instead, learn to live with a little heat by setting your thermostat a little higher. We recommend setting it at around the 75-78 degrees mark.
Close Off Vents in Unused Rooms
If you’re not occupying certain rooms or areas of your home, it’s a good idea to close the air vents in these areas. Also, close the doors to keep the air flowing and cool in the occupied areas. This will not only keep you cooler but can also help you to conserve energy and reduce your energy costs. You’ll be surprised at how well this little trick can keep you cooler.
Keep Shades and Curtains Closed
Just a few decades ago, Nevada residents managed to make it through heat waves without air conditioning. What did they do? They simply closed their curtains or shades. The natural shade from trees and keeping your shades and curtains closed can make such a difference to the coolness of your home. Keeping the sunny side of your home shaded will not only keep you cooler but help to take the pressure off of your AC.
Get Some Ceiling Fans
Many people believe that ceiling fans cool the air in the room. This is a myth! Ceiling fans cool the people in the room and not the air, drying the perspiration on the skin and making you feel cooler. It means you can set your thermostat a little higher and give your air conditioning system a bit of a break. The great thing about ceiling fans is that they can be installed in almost any room and switched on and off as necessary. On cooler days, you may even be able to turn your AC off completely and let your fans do all the cooling for you.
Go Out For Dinner!
Looking for an excuse to visit your favorite restaurant? Well, avoiding using the stove on heatwave days can help to keep your home cooler. This also applies to your dryer or dishwasher. These appliances can get hot when in use adding to the heat that’s already in your home. Or if you want to enjoy the great outdoors once it cools a little in the evening, why not treat the family to some BBQ? If you need to use your dryer or dishwasher, why not use them in the evenings or even set them to run overnight?
Consider an Upgrade
If your air conditioner is 10-15 years old, it’s probably well overdue for an upgrade. Over the years, air conditioners have become more and more efficient, delivering outstanding performance for fewer dollars. Older systems lose power and efficiency over time and may not cool your home as well as they once did. While some AC systems can last up to 20 years in the average climate, we have anything but the average climate here in Nevada! It means our systems need a little more TLC than most and could need replacing every 10 years. The good news is that new systems with their advanced technology could save you up to 20% on your cooling costs. We’d be delighted to provide you with an estimate for a new system and tell you more about the more energy-efficient systems of today.
Preventative Maintenance: The Best Insurance
When you look after your AC system with preventative maintenance, you can extend its lifespan, reduce the chance of faults occurring, and keep your system running more efficiently. And a more efficient system is a cheaper system to run. Just like your car needs servicing from time to time, so does your AC system. A thorough tune-up once a year will keep your system operating beautifully and ready for the summer season. A tune-up will take care of the dust and debris that can build up in your system and cause your AC to work harder and use up more energy. All moving parts will receive a little TLC in the form of lubrication. By applying oil and other lubricants to these parts, we help to keep these parts operational for longer and less vulnerable to faults. We recommend that you have your AC tuned up at least once a year. Why not arrange duct cleaning at the same time? This will ensure your entire system operates more efficiently, especially during a heatwave.
Call the Cooling Pros For More Advice
The hot summers in Nevada make many residents retreat to the comfort of their own homes. There’s nothing like stepping out of the fierce heat, through your front door, and into your cool and refreshing oasis. However, your AC does need a little help along the way. Anything you can do to take the pressure off of your air conditioning system will keep it running more efficiently and reduce your energy costs. By following all or some of the tips above, you can protect your AC from overheating and premature wear and tear.
Here at Sierra Air Conditioning & Plumbing, we’re your partners in cool comfort. As our motto says, we offer “Service That Soars Above The Rest” and it shows in all that we do. Whether you’ve noticed your air conditioner isn’t working as well as it once was, or you’ve noticed a spike in your energy costs, we can give you advice on a new system that will keep you cool on the hottest days of the year. Our technicians can advise you on a brand new system that will run more efficiently or recommend repairs or maintenance that keeps your existing system working perfectly.
Give our team at Sierra Air Conditioning & Plumbing a call today to find out more about our AC systems or for more advice on how you can look after your air conditioning system when extreme temperatures hit. We’d be delighted to tell you more and discuss your individual needs with you.