Everyone has some interesting tips and tricks they’ve developed to stay as cool as possible during the hot summer months, ideally without spending their entire paychecks on air conditioning costs. In many cases, having a functional air conditioning system isn’t just a convenience — it’s also a medical necessity for many Americans of all ages. Even if you don’t need an air conditioner in your home, it’s not easy to go on a Netflix binge for seven hours straight when it’s so hot that you’re sweating just from breathing.
It doesn’t matter why you need or want a good air conditioner, and it doesn’t even matter how often you intend to use it; you deserve to have an HVAC system that will keep you comfortable without costing a fortune and without causing a lot of stress.
Unfortunately, many less-than-trustworthy heating and air conditioning repair companies know that their customers aren’t HVAC repair experts, and with all of the new energy-efficient technology rolling out these days, it’s easy for certain misconceptions to take hold which actually hurt consumers in the long run.
So, with that in mind, here are some of the most common misconceptions and myths surrounding the HVAC repair industry, along with the correct facts that will help you save money and stay cool this summer:
- Myth 1: Turning up your AC as high as possible will cool down your house faster
In reality, this won’t cool your house any faster than if you leave the air conditioner running at a lower temperature; the only thing that will happen is that the unit will use up extra energy, which costs you extra money. Many people will crank up the AC on their thermostat to a temperature much colder than what they actually want, but they don’t realize that this won’t work on a central air unit controlled by a thermostat. If you’re using a single-room air conditioner, it’s possible that the room will cool down a bit faster, but if you make this a habit, you’ll end up paying for it (quite literally).
- Myth 2: It’s better to leave an air conditioning unit running all the time rather than turning it off and on whenever you leave the house
This definitely isn’t true, and if you’re noticing that your AC unit is making some funny noises or using too much energy when you turn it off and on, it probably means that the equipment is too old and needs to be repaired (or, if it’s over 15 years old, it’s probably best to just replace it altogether). If you’re one of those people who tends to forget to turn down the thermostat when you leave the house, this is where a programmable thermostat would come in handy. Most home repair stores sell programmable thermostats, but you’ll more likely get a better thermostat that works perfectly with your HVAC system when you go through commercial air conditioning repair companies.
- Myth 3: Buy an energy-efficient air conditioner and see your energy bills drop automatically!
Yes, it’s true that an energy-efficient AC unit can save you anywhere from 20% to 50% on energy costs, but this is only the case if you make sure that you purchase the correct AC unit for your home, and if you also continue to practice energy-saving habits (like turning down the thermostat when you leave for work in the morning). As with the thermostat, the best way to ensure that you’re purchasing the best unit for your home is to call up an HVAC repair service and ask for some help.
- Myth 4: Turning a fan on will cool down a room, even if no one’s there
Turning on a fan is a great way to lower your energy bills if you find that you’re turning on the AC too often, but fans don’t cool down rooms in the same way that air conditioners do. AC units work by cooling down the air in the room, but fans produce cooling effects because the increased air circulation allows the sweat on your skin to evaporate faster, thus cooling down your body faster and making the room a little more comfortable. If you aren’t in the room when a fan is turned on, it’s really just a waste of energy.
- Myth 5: Your HVAC system will be in better shape if you don’t use it as often
Just like any other piece of equipment, it’s true that you’ll need to call up a local HVAC repair company to service the system and keep it operating properly — but not using your air conditioner at all doesn’t mean that the system can last forever. The average life of an HVAC unit is about 15 years, but if you don’t clean it or use it often, it’s likely that a lot of dust and dirt will collect in the air filter and the ductwork. This is bad — not just because it will make your HVAC unit work overtime and use up more energy, but also because the dust, dirt, and pollens that collect may affect your health quite a bit. Only about 42% of American homeowners have their HVAC units inspected regularly, even though more than 60% of households have at least one air conditioner. The best way to keep your system operating safely and efficiently — no matter how often you use it — is to have it inspected at least twice a year by a trusted HVAC repair service.
Now we’re asking our readers for some help: you’ve heard some of the most common myths about air conditioning and HVAC repairs, but you definitely haven’t heard them all, and maybe you even have a couple questions of your own about other “helpful hints” you’ve heard about. Feel free to visit the comments section below and share any thoughts or questions you have!