10 mistakes not to make when using an air conditioner

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Joel Fulleda
10 mistakes not to make when using an air conditioner

Are you sure you don't commit any of it yourself?

Sweltering heat, skyrocketing humidity: what to do? The first thing that comes to mind is to turn on the air conditioner to get some relief. But are you sure you know how to use it best?

In this article we will list you 10 errors, quite common, which are committed when using the heat pump or other types of air conditioners.

First mistake: using the wrong size air conditioner

Are you sure you made a correct purchase? The typical classification of air conditioners is carried out in BTU (British Thermal Unit), usually in a range of 5000 to 15000.

The most common rule would be to calculate 200 BTUs for each square meter of the room to be cooled, plus 600 BTUs for each person who constantly occupies the room. An additional 10% should be added to the resulting figure if there is a high ceiling in the room, if it is facing south etc.

For a room of 20 square meters, therefore, 9000 BTUs are generally more than enough, while 12000 would be too many and would lead to an unnecessary waste of electricity.  

You can save money not only by using the air conditioner better, but also by switching to another energy supplier. You can find the best rate with InformaticsKings Tagliacosti!

Second mistake: keeping doors and windows open

Air conditioners work like this: the air conditioning unit extracts the hot air from the room; the air passes over a refrigerant which absorbs the heat from the air itself. The cooled air is carried back into the room, while the absorbed heat is expelled from the rear of the unit.

This is why window models must be mounted in a closed window and central units must be placed outside the house. The "inside" and "outside" air must be isolated from each other for the air conditioning to work. If the windows or doors are open, the heat that is expelled will tend to return inside.

Third mistake: setting a temperature too low

Upon returning from work, you find yourself in a 32 degree room with stagnant air. What do you do? Obviously, the temptation is to set the thermostat at 18 degrees to cool the environment more quickly. Too bad that's not the way air conditioning works ...

Whether the room is at 32 or 20 degrees, the air conditioner always "pumps" out the same amount of fresh air. The temperature setting only tells the unit when it no longer needs to pump fresh air. Changing the setting from 21 to 18 degrees doesn't speed things up.

Indeed, it even worsens them, because the air conditioner will continue to operate even after reaching the ideal temperature. If your ideal temperature is 22 degrees, and you set it to 18, it will only work until the room temperature reaches 18 degrees, by which time you are too cold and you have also wasted a lot of energy unnecessarily.

Then, set the air conditioner to the ideal temperature and wait patiently for it to do its job.

Fourth mistake: leave the room and leave the vents open

If you have a window air conditioner ...

Do you remember that this type of air conditioners are designed to work in a room of a certain size? Those dimensions require the doors to be closed.

For example, your bedroom will also be 14 square meters, but if you leave the door open while the air conditioner is running, fresh air will come out of the room and hot air will come in: the machine is trying to cool both the indoor air. to the room than the external one!

To maximize efficiency, keep the doors closed in all rooms with a window air conditioner. This will limit the amount of air that needs to be cooled in that room, and speed up the process.

If you have a central unit ...

If you have a ducted system you will also have vents in each room. If all the vents are open, the central unit tries to cool all the rooms.

The more space needs to be refreshed, the more time it takes to refresh all that space. This also means that the air conditioner will have to remain on for longer, generating waste of current.

By closing the vents, you reduce the number of rooms to be refreshed and obviously the current absorbed.

Fifth mistake: not circulating the air with a fan

Many use a fan when it is not very hot, and resort to the air conditioner when the temperature becomes unbearable. Many do not know, however, that the efficiency of the air conditioner is greater when used together with a fan, especially those from the ceiling.

Sixth mistake: not cleaning the filters

Even if your room is spotless, dust particles floating in the air are still sucked into the air conditioner when it is running. To prevent these particles from causing problems, each air conditioner is equipped with special filters.

A clean filter is essential to keep the air conditioner in perfect working order. Particles reduce the flow of air, causing the air conditioner to consume more. A dirty filter can increase your bill by as much as 15%: if the air conditioner is on all day, every day, it is advisable to clean the filter once a month. If you use it less, once every three months.

Seventh mistake: not cleaning the air conditioner between seasons

The constant transition from hot to cold and vice versa causes condensation to form inside the air conditioners, more than anything else in the window ones. Usually the condensate is discharged, but if by chance it were to accumulate there would be problems with the accumulation of bacteria and mold.

And since air conditioners blow air around the room, it's clear they could lead to various health problems.

This is why it is important to clean and show the air conditioner to a technician at the beginning of each season.

Eighth mistake: do not perform maintenance

Periodic maintenance not only extends the life of the appliance, but also keeps it in full efficiency and with optimal energy consumption.

Don't stop at the last moment, when it may already be late!

Ninth mistake: ignoring heat sources

The more you manage to reduce the heat in your room, apartment or house, the more efficient your air conditioner will be.

Some tips: replace the old windows with double glazed windows; seal any points where there may be drafts; cover the windows with thick curtains and keep them closed, lowering the blinds, during the hottest hours; the ideal would be to make a thermal coat on the building; the PC generates heat ...

Tenth mistake: expecting too much from the air conditioner ...

Let's face it, air conditioners don't do magic. Even if you follow the advice above, there may still be days when you still feel warm with the appliance on.

On average, an air conditioner can lower the temperature by about 9 degrees compared to the outside temperature. So don't expect miracles if it's 45 degrees outside!

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