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Summer tips for your home

July 12, 2017 12:22 pm

Air Conditioner Maintenance & Inspection

Start your air conditioner early in the season, don’t wait until the first heat wave. This way if you discover a problem, it can be repaired before the temperature is unbearable. It’s also a good idea to check your filter; a clean filter ensures maximum efficiency.

Have a certified HVAC professional clean and inspect your air conditioner regularly to ensure safe and efficient operation. If you have a new unit, annual maintenance is necessary to protect your warranty.
 

Pay Attention To Your Thermostat

Installing a programmable thermostat is one of the best ways to save on your energy bill. You can choose the times and temperature that best suits your family. Set it as high as comfortably possible, the smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your overall cooling will be.

According to the Ontario Power Authority, for every 1/2 degree over 26°C you set thermostat, there is an energy saving of 6-10%.
 
time of day usage chart
 
*Avoid setting your thermostat at a colder setting than normal when you turn on your air conditioner. It will not cool your home any faster and could result in excessive cooling and unnecessary expense.
 

Keep Out The Sun!

Close blinds and curtains during the day to keep the hot sun out of your home. For windows that have strong sun beating in all day, consider installing solar window film.
 

Improve Air Circulation

Keep curtains and furniture from blocking your cooling vents. Vacuum dust and pet hair out of your registers and cold air returns. Ensure that the dampers in your registers are open. If you’ve recently done renovations, it would be a good idea to invest in duct cleaning to ensure that you don’t have obstructed airflow.

Ceiling fans are useful in the summer to aid air circulation. In the Spring/Summer, reverse the direction of the blades to counter-clockwise to blow cool air on you; and don’t forget to dust the blades every so often!
 

Clean The Dryer Vent

A clogged dryer vent causes warm air to blow back into the room, eventually raising the temperature in the whole house. With nowhere for the air to go, your dryer also has to work harder and for longer to get the clothes dry, a big waste of energy.
 

Check For Drafts

Checking for drafts is not just important in the winter, in the summer cracks can let warm air in when you’re trying to keep your home cool. How to check:

  • Run the back of your hand around the framing of your windows and exterior doors. Feel for any breeze, and listen for any whooshing or whistling sounds of air coming through cracks. Place your hand in front of electrical outlets on exterior walls to check for any drafts that may result from a lack of insulation.
  • Light a candle and hold it 2 inches from the windows and exterior doors. Position it at various points around the windows and door frames and look for any flickering from drafts.
  • Close the curtains and turn off the interior lighting. Make it as dark as possible inside while it’s sunny outdoors. Make note of any sunlight that’s coming through where the door meets the jamb and threshold.

Install weather stripping around doors to prevent warm air from entering your home and caulk windows. Replace any cracked window glass.