Air Conditioning FAQs

This page is a continuation of frequently asked questions (F.A.Q.s), specifically those concerning air conditioners and air conditioning. We begin with tips on how to cut costs on your air conditioner’s electricity bill, then we address more specific questions about air conditioners and air conditioning. We hope this information is of help!

How to Save Money on Air Conditioning Costs:

A. If you’re buying a window air conditioning unit, be sure it is matched well with the size of the room it is intended to air condition. If the unit is too small, it will not do a good job at cooling the room. Also, the unit may short-circuit, or break, from over-usage. Also, keep in mind that window air conditioners cannot match the power of a good central air conditioning system. While central air conditioning systems are more expensive initially, they do a much better job at circulating the cool air into the home, and the warm air out of the home.

Changing your home’s air filters every month goes a long way towards lengthening the lifespan of your central air conditioning system. In case your unfamiliar with your home’s air filters, they are those blue rectangular things with wire mesh built into them. If there a long lapse between changings, they will instead appear gray. In fact, every time you change your air filter, they will appear slightly grayed, and that’s how you know they’re working! That gray matter is a combination of dirt, dust, and other unhealthy air-borne particles that are both hazardous to your health and damaging to your central air conditioning system. When you replace a grayish-blue air filter, you know it’s done a good job!

For some applications, for example that room over your garage, your central air conditioning system will not be able to “reach” that room, and so a window-type air conditioner is the only option for making the room cool, and in summer, habitable.

One more suggestion on the topic a new central air conditioning purchase; If your central air system is performing well, it still may be worth it to buy a new one, because older systems eat up a lot more electricity than newer air conditioning systems. Not only will you be saving countless dollars each month, you will also be helping to save the environment from the encroaching threat of global warming.

B. Install a programmable thermostat.

Unless you want to spent lots and lots of money on your pet, there’s no use in keeping your home at it’s coolest when you’re not there, for example when you’re at work or on vacation. One way to save money on your air conditioning costs is to purchase and install a programmable thermostat. In doing so, you can keep the electricity and Freon usage of your central air conditioning system to a minimum. It’s really a very clever solution to a rather difficult problem. If you’re not home, why pay to keep it cool?

C. Lower the drapes and/or blinds. An easy enough procedure to perform, this effective method is often forgotten. Simply put, the heat emitted from sunlight does A LOT to warm your home, and keeping this sunlight at bay is one of the most important battles in the war for a cool home! An additional benefit of closing the drapes and/or blinds is privacy from nosy neighbors!

D. Minimize lighting usage in your home. The typical bulb puts out a lot more heat than you would expect, and, somewhat obviously, turning off these bulbs will reduce the presence of heat within the home, limiting the amount of money you spend on your heating and cooling Virginia Beach, or whatever town you reside in.

Besides lights, computers donate heavily to the heat of a home. This production of heat can be extended to any electronic device within the home, so turn em’ all off to stay as cool as possible!

E. Stay downstairs. Heat naturally rises, and remaining downstairs will help with keeping you cool (your dogs may have tipped you off to this one; ever noticed how they stay downstairs on the wooden floor on hot days?).

F. Stay hydrated. On hot days, the human body sweats to keep itself cool. By producing sweat, the body “washes itself off.” Not only does this itself keep the body cool, but the moisture will also help “catch” any passing wind or breeze, furthering the cooling process. This process is an important factor in keeping cool, and staying hydrated allows for the continuation of this process.

Another important part of staying hydrated is that, because of your body’s natural willingness to sweat, your body will lose water. You will sometimes feel the effects of dehydration, sometimes not. In either case, it very important to keep the proper amount of fluids in your system, because your vital organs depend on water to function at their best. Take it from professional athletes; notice how they’re constantly drinking water (or, if they’re highly professional, maybe someone else has been hired to do this for them)?

G. Plant trees and shrubbery around your home to keep the home cool. Click Here for great gardening tips! These shadows that fall on your home will naturally prevent heat build-up. This greenery can be particularly effective if its shade rests on a window. Once again, in addition to helping you stay cool, the trees that you have planted will be of use for global air quality, and may even provide a home for beautiful wildlife such as birds!

H. Installing ceiling fans can be a helpful and cost-effective way to keep your home and yourself cool on warm days. Remember to make sure those fans are turning in a counter-clockwise motion on hot summer days. In case you were curious, they should turn clockwise in the winter and in colder months to bring the warm air downward from the ceiling towards the floor. Costs associated with your Virginia Beach air conditioning bill will thereby be much lower. This a very helpful tip to remember, because it can be used in the cooler months as well as in the warm ones, something that cannot be said of many of the tips on this list.

I. When purchasing a home, or during a home renovation project, choose a home with lighter colors (such as white, beige or tan) as lighter shades of color tend to reflect sunlight, while darker colors will actually absorb the heat within sunlight, and transfer it to the insides of your home.

J. Make sure that the air vents from which the cool air is coming are unobstructed. In other words, make sure the air vents (usually located in the floor) are not covered up by furniture or other sorts of large objects. Couches are the most common culprit for obstruction, but this will cause the cool air to be pushed out into other rooms, and in such a way you are not actually “losing” any cool air, but you ARE depriving the room in which you are in residing from cooling down.

K. Lastly, you can maximize the coolness of your home by closing off doors to rooms that you are not using. For example, bathrooms can be a giant waster of cool air…so close those vents when the bathrooms are not in use! The closed vents in the bathrooms (or any unused room for that matter) will help you conserve electricity and money, but they will not be so unbearable when entered, e.g. when guests come over and ask to use those rooms. Be sure to also close off the air vents in those rooms! If you simply close the doors, but forget to close the vents, the cool air will still be pumped through those rooms. There is usually an easy-to-use and easy-to-identify manual switch on the vent, much like the air vents in your car’s air conditioning system.

J. That’s the last of em’! If you need any assistance with ac repair in Virginia Beach, use the company Hampton Roads trusts, A-1 American Services.

Air Conditioning F.A.Q.

A-1 American Services provides air conditioning, heating and plumbing services, like plumbing repair to homes and businesses in the Hampton Roads Virginia cities of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Newport News and Hampton and north into Williamsburg. A-1 American provides emergency service and repair, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including weekends and holidays. A-1 American charges by the job, not by the hour. A-1 American prides itself on immediate response, punctuality, courtesy and customer satisfaction. Call today 757-425-2400