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7 Issues that Affect the Energy Efficiency of your Air Conditioner

small_7989922277When St. Louis area homeowners are choosing a new air conditioner for their homes, one of the major deciding factors is the efficiency rating of the unit they choose. But did you know there are many issues that can prevent your air conditioner from performing at its labeled energy-efficiency? Today we’re going to talk about those issues and help you get the best performance out of your air conditioner.

7 issues that affect the energy efficiency of your air conditioner

  1. A low SEER rating. The most obvious factor that will affect the energy efficiency of your air conditioner is its SEER rating. The lower the SEER rating of your air conditioner, the less efficient it will be. For the best performance, look for an air conditioner with a SEER rating of at least 14.5 (the minimum for the Energy Star label) but shoot for a SEER rating of 16 or better for optimal performance and efficiency.
  2. A bad installation. You could buy the best air conditioner in the world, but it wouldn’t mean much if it wasn’t installed properly. Along with technical issues, a bad installation might also include an improperly sized air conditioner, poor ductwork design and more. That’s why it’s always important to work with a NATE certified contractor like Jerry Kelly for all of your installations and repairs.
  3. Lack of maintenance. Without annual maintenance, your air conditioner can develop a whole host of performance problems that will decrease the efficiency of your unit. Get a tune-up every year to ensure you get the best performance from your system.
  4. Dirty air filter. A dirty air filter will restrict system airflow and force your air handler to work harder than usual. Check your filter monthly to ensure airflow problems don’t decrease your air conditioner’s energy efficiency.
  5. Wrong air filter for unit. If the MERV rating of your air filter is higher than your air conditioner can handle, or if you’re using the wrong sized filter, your system’s efficiency will decline. Be sure to always use filters that are compatible with your air conditioner.
  6. Air leaks and/or poor insulation. While your air conditioner is delivering cool air to your home, air leaks and/or poor insulation could prevent your home from properly containing it. This forces your air conditioner to work harder and longer and consume more energy. Ensure your home is properly insulated and that air leaks and duct leaks are sealed.
  7. Inefficient thermostat settings. The lower you set your thermostat, the more energy your air conditioner will consume. Try setting your thermostat as high as you are comfortable with and consider installing a programmable thermostat to conserve energy throughout the day.

If you have any questions about the energy efficiency of your air conditioner, or if you’d like a cooling system serviced or installed in your home, contact Jerry Kelly, your St. Louis air conditioning company. We service the St. Louis area, including towns like Ladue, Lake St. Louis and Manchester.

photo credit: dagnyg via photopin cc