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Archive for Air Conditioning

Hazy. Hot. Humid.

These three words are often used to describe July weather in New England.

This has been especially true as a stifling heat wave has swept across the Northeast in recent weeks, causing rising temperatures throughout the Massachusetts area.

In fact, with so many people running their air conditioners around the clock, officials at ISO New England have even expressed concerns about residents putting too much stress on the power grid.

Just this week, the ISO-NE regional grid manager asked residents to conserve electricity in order to reduce the risk of power outages.

Energy saving suggestions from the group — which oversees the operation of New England’s bulk electric power system and transmission lines — include raising air conditioning thermostats, turning off unneeded lights or office equipment and putting off chores requiring electricity until the early morning or late evening hours.

Here’s a few more ideas from the plumbing and heating professionals at Rapid Response for conserving energy while still keeping your home cool:

1. Rearrange.

Believe it or not, moving your furniture around can actually help reduce energy costs.

The configuration of air conditioning vents in many homes may mean you’re wasting energy cooling the bottom side of a couch or the back of a chair instead of blowing that cold air out into your room.

If this a problem, there are extensions you can buy to direct air the right way, but often times it can be easier to just shift your sofa to another wall or move a chair across the room.

2. Give 78 degrees a try.

No, it’s not a 90s boy band. 78 degrees is a recommended level for many air conditioning units to run at their optimal level.

You may think of that as warmer than you’d like it, but give it a try before you knock it. After all, compared to the sweltering temps outside, 78 should feel pretty nice.

Setting your thermostat even 5 degrees higher can cause your air conditioner to use up to 40 percent less energy.

3. Set it warmer when you sleep.

Your body doesn’t need the same level of cool while you’re sleeping as it does during your waking hours.

During the nighttime hours, try turning your air conditioner down  — setting your thermostat to a higher temperature — starting an hour or two before you go to bed.

The same thing goes for when you’re at work during the day. Turn your thermostat up to 85 and close the curtains or blinds.

It will be hot for a few minutes when you get home, but the cost and energy savings can be significant.

4. Service your A/C.

Of course, one of our great heating and plumbing professionals at Rapid Response would be the best option for giving your air conditioning unit the full check-up it needs, but even some basic self maintenance can help.

Most units would benefit greatly from a good hosing out, especially if your home is plagued with pesky trees or shrubs that drop seeds, which can stick to the unit’s filters and make it work significantly harder.

5. Turn the lights off.

Turning off some lights in rooms you’re not in can not only help reduce the amount of heat being given off in your home, but also save plenty of energy.

Also, paying attention to how much light is being let in from outside can keep your home from heating up due to the hot sun outside.

These tips should help you and your family avoid over-stressing the grid during any heat wave and keep your air conditioner running smoothly all summer. But don’t forget to also schedule your maintenance appointment with our team at Rapid Response.

However, if your A/C unit does decide to go on summer vacation and break down, don’t forget you can call Rapid Response anytime at 888-549-0222 or contact us for A/C repair, HVAC maintenance or plumbing services 24 hours a day!

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