As you seek to remain cool and comfortable in your home, an important factor to consider is the cost of your air conditioning system. In addition to what you will have to pay to install a new unit, you should also have a good idea of what running the unit on a regular basis will cost you.
There are many different factors that influence the running costs of an AC, from the size of the home to the number of occupants. As you budget for the energy costs of cooling your home, keep the following factors in mind.
Consider your floor plan
The floor plan of your home will play an important role in determining how much energy the AC unit consumes. Homes with multiple floors and complex designs are likely to demand more from an AC than simpler open plan properties.
If you have more rooms you need to cool, you will have to factor in how much cool air is being channelled into those rooms and with what level of efficiency. Uneven cooling can cause the unit to remain on for longer periods and increase running costs.
System of vents and ducts in the home
If you're running a ducted or reverse cycle air conditioning system, the effectiveness of the ducts and vents in your home will play an important role in the running of the unit. Ducted and reverse cycle systems operate by channelling cool air into multiple rooms via a series of ducts and vents.
You should make sure that these air passages are always clean and clear of blockages such as dirt, debris and other items. In this way, all the rooms of the home will receive a proportional amount of cool air and remain at the required temperature. Remember to factor in air duct maintenance as part of your budget for running costs.
Look into your windows and doors
The positioning of your doors and windows will also influence running costs. Homes that have multiple windows in the same room can be more vulnerable to air leaks and the need for the AC to work harder to keep the room cool.
It is important to make sure windows and doors are closed and adequately sealed whenever the AC is on. If vents are located near windows/doors, the positioning can also increase running costs.
How the AC is operated
How you set your thermostat will also influence the running costs of the AC. In fact, it is estimated that each degree cooler you set your thermostat will increase running costs by a certain percentage (10-15%). You can therefore spend less on your AC by setting your thermostat no lower than you need to.
Also, don't forget to opt for air conditioning repair when necessary.