If you’re on the east coast, you might still have the heat on this April! But warm-weather lovers can rejoice, because summer is definitely on the way. If that means a new room air conditioner for you, you’re in luck. You’ll find a wide selection of powerful and energy-efficient room air conditioners on the market.
ENERGY STAR’s website has some great tips for purchasing room air conditioners:
• Consider a unit with controls. Controls such as a digital readout for the thermostat setting, and a built-in timer help you adjust your unit to use less energy.
• Check the yellow EnergyGuide label. This label helps you determine how much energy it takes to operate the model, compare the energy use of similar models, and estimate annual operating costs
• Look for a unit whose filter slides out easily for regular cleaning. Clean filters help keep your unit in good working condition.
• Select the unit with the highest Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) for greater savings. The EER is the cooling capacity in BTUs divided by the watts.
Top tips to keep your air conditioner running smoothly:
And when you do buy that new room air conditioner, here are some tips courtesy of the U.S. Dept. of Energy to keep it running smoothly for years to come:
• The most important maintenance task that will ensure the efficiency of your air conditioner is to routinely replace or clean its filters.
• Clogged, dirty filters block normal airflow and reduce a system’s efficiency significantly. Replacing a dirty, clogged filter with a clean one can lower your air conditioner’s energy consumption by 5% to 15%.
• Outdoor condenser coils can also become very dirty if the outdoor environment is dusty or if there is foliage nearby. You can easily see the condenser coil and notice if dirt is collecting on its fins.
• At the start of each cooling season, inspect the seal between the air conditioner and the window frame to ensure it makes contact with the unit’s metal case. Moisture can damage this seal, allowing cool air to escape from your house.
• In the winter, either cover your room air conditioner or remove and store it. Covering the outdoor unit of a central air conditioner will protect the unit from winter weather and debris.