Air Conditioner Appreciation Days

Or…better known as the Dog Days of Summer.

Where would we be without air conditioning?  True, our forebears in a bygone era didn’t have it, but if they could have looked into a crystal ball to see the future, is there any doubt that they would have liked (and wished they could have) what they saw?

With the excessively hot weather that much of the nation experiences at this time of the year, it is hard to imagine that anyone can maintain the type of productivity that they are accustomed to, not to mention personal comfort or the health challenges for those at risk such as the very young, the elderly, or the frail among us.

So let’s all take a moment to thank our air conditioners and our service professionals who install and maintain our AC!

With summer bringing those hot, sticky days, it’s no surprise that July 3 through August 15 are “Air Conditioning Appreciation Days”.  As part of “Air Conditioning Appreciation Days,” The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) wants every homeowner to know that “appreciating” or caring for your air conditioner or central air system can save you money and keep your equipment operating smoothly during these “dog days of summer.”

AHRI has developed a list of basic guidelines that can help you keep cool this summer, and at minimum cost:

  • Clean and replace your air conditioner’s filter frequently (monthly during heavy use).
  • Central air conditioners and heat pumps should have annual inspections by a trained technician who will check refrigerant fluid and mechanical operations.
  • Keep fallen leaves, grass clippings, foliage and other dirt and debris away from your outdoor unit. And keep the unit’s coils clean, following manufacturers instructions.
  • Don’t block vents or ducts inside the house to assure proper air flow throughout your house.
  • Caulk and install weather stripping around windows and doors (especially the attic) to close air gaps.
  • Run fans to keep air moving, so you feel cooler and can cut back air conditioner use, thus saving energy.
  • Avoid using the oven during the day. Run the dishwasher, washing machine and dryer in the evening, when electricity rates may be lower and heat from those appliances won’t increase the demands on your air conditioning system.
  • Turn off lamps, TV and other appliances when not in use.
  • Raise the thermostat setting as much as you can without sacrificing comfort. For every degree you raise the setting, you can expect to cut your energy consumption by at least 3% and possibly as much as 5%.
  • Consider use of a programmable thermostat to automatically increase or decrease temperatures during the day or night to suit your family’s lifestyle and reduce energy costs.
  • Use shades, blinds, or curtains to keep sunlight out of the house during the day.
  • Keep windows and doors closed when the air conditioning is on.

AHRI has the answers to 42 questions consumers most often ask about central indoor comfort systems. Send a self-addressed stamped business envelope to: ARI, 4301 North Fairfax Drive (Suite 425), Arlington, Virginia 22203, and ask for your free copy of “How To Keep Your Cool And Save Cold Cash,” or visit AHRI’s web site at www.ahrinet.org to view an online version of the brochure.

You will appreciate air conditioning even more when you keep your costs down and your equipment running smoothly.

The Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute is the trade association representing manufacturers of more than 90 percent of U.S. produced central air-conditioning and commercial refrigeration equipment.

This and other news items may be found on the Internet at AHRI’s web site, www.ahrinet.org.