People who live in Las Vegas know that the start of the fall doesn’t mean an escape from summer heat. Often, temperatures spike during the end of September and beginning of October, and that means a last extremely rough period for air conditioning systems before the (somewhat) cooler weather starts. We have some tips on coping with the heat at this time of year to make your hard-working air conditioner’s job a bit easier.
- Clear the outdoor cabinet: The area around the outdoor cabinet (the condenser) needs to have sufficient room all around it so that it can run air through the coils and exhaust heat properly. Make sure there isn’t any debris around the cabinet, clear away leaves, and check on the general cleanliness of the unit. The coils may need cleaning, but that’s a job that requires professionals with special chemical cleaning foam.
- Manage the thermostat: You can still enjoy comfortable temperatures in your home without pushing the thermostat all the way to its lowest setting. In fact, that low setting will put too much pressure on the AC, forcing the compressor to run longer and make a breakdown more likely. We recommend a setting of 78°F during the day, and dropping 8°F at night. This temperature range will be comfortable for most people, and will remove an immense amount of strain from the air conditioner.
- Reduce heat levels from inside your home: Don’t contribute to the amount of heat in your home by producing more! Keep all non-essential powered devices turned off during the day, avoid using the oven or stove at peak heat hours, only take showers and baths at night (both send extra moisture into the air), and keep most of the lights off. To stop heat from outside getting in, see that the windows shaded.
- Arrange for maintenance: Maintenance for an AC doesn’t only need to be done in spring. If you have worries about an older air conditioner, call for maintenance during the fall—and you can ask your technician if it’s time to replace it.