Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Air Conditioning Verses Triple Digit Temps

A little refresher on what an AC actually does. AC moves heat from somewhere it is not wanted (inside our homes) to somewhere it doesn’t matter (outside). Keep in mind that when moving heat from a cooler location (inside at 758 to 80*) to a much warmer location (outside at 95* to 105*+) the higher that outside temperature is the harder it is to move that heat into it. Most systems at designed at 95 to 97 outside and 75 inside, that’s a20*split, once the temp outside goes above 95* the actual capacity of the system decreases, because it is so much harder to push that heat out into an already hot area. Look at it like a car, when you are going 65 mph on a flat highway the car is chugging along just fine , and even going downhill your engine may be too big, (like a big AC system when its only 85* outside). But when you are climbing a hill the car starts to slow down and the steeper the hill the harder for the car to make it up ( like moving 75* air to an area that’s already over 100*). So if your system struggles to keep the temp more than 20* to 25* below the outdoor temp, during the heat of the day, but catches up within 2 hours of the sun going down, then your system may be working as intended. If it does not seem to catch up during the night or you have not had it serviced recently then it may be a good idea to have it inspected by a reputable contractor. IF you need to have your system replaced, do not put in a bigger system just to keep your house at 70* on a 100* plus day, because if you do that then you may actually increase your electrical usage and decrease your comfort during the remaining 340 days of the year. Don’t forget that your duct work and air filter are very important parts of your system. a clean filter and sealed, well designed and insulated duct system can go a long way toward increasing your comfort and efficiency.