When an HVAC company prepares for the installation of HVAC equipment in a home, the installation technician first performs a load calculation to properly size the equipment. The load calculation will include factors such as square footage of the cooling space and number of people in the household. The HVAC specialist will perform the load calculation according to the “Manual J” specifications. Some HVAC professionals use Manual J software to calculate AC load. This calculation determines the size in tonnage of the unit required for the space. 

The homeowner can do a few things to lighten the load on their air conditioner. Lightening the AC load will save energy and extend the life of your AC equipment. 

Six tips to lighten the load include:

Use your blinds and curtains – Direct sunlight streaming in through the windows will increase the load on your air conditioner. Close the blinds and curtains to block the sun, especially during the afternoon. 

Use fans in every room – Ceiling fans circulate the conditioned air, making the air feel cooler. Box fans and floor fans can also lower the load on the air conditioner. You can often set your air conditioner a few degrees warmer and use fans to stay cool. The higher the temperature you set on the thermostat, the lower the load will be on your AC unit. 

Decide on a temperature and leave the thermostat set – Many HVAC experts recommend setting the thermostat on 78 degrees. The experts recommend that you set a temperature on the thermostat and you leave the device set at that temperature. Turning the temperature down will not cool the home faster. Leave the thermostat set at one setting for energy efficiency. 

Reschedule Household Chores – Implement a household policy that the dryer will only be run before 10:00 AM and after 8:00 PM. The dryer puts a higher demand on the air conditioner. Using the dryer when the AC demand is low will lighten the overall load on your AC unit. Consider line-drying your clothes to eliminate the need for the dryer at all during the summer.  The oven and stove can quickly heat up the house. Use the stove and oven in the earlier and later hours of the day when AC demand is lighter. 

Use exhaust fans – Turn on the exhaust fan when you take a shower. The exhaust fan removes the humid, hot air from the space, reducing the load on your AC unit. When you cook, be sure to use the exhaust fan over the range. 

Keep your filters clean – Your AC system needs free flowing air in order to operate. Filters are the first line of defense between the air in your home and your AC system. The filters collect dust, pet hair, bacteria, mold and other particles. These filters must be changed at least once per month. Excessively dirty filters can cause cooling problems and may require extensive repairs. Be sure to keep your filters clean to lighten the load on your AC unit. 

Call Senica Air Conditioning, Inc. if you would like more information about how to your reduce energy costs. Senica Air Conditioning, Inc. serves the greater St. Petersburg FL with heating and air conditioning services.

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