Hints and Tips for Using Your Air Conditioner
Adjust the louvres on your air-conditioner so they face downwards for heating and upwards for cooling.
Close off areas which are not being used.
Clean the outdoor air-conditioner unit regularly. Refrigerative air conditioners should be kept clean and protected from the weather, as dirt will decrease their effectiveness and efficiency. If not used for extended periods, covers should be placed over the compressors, air intakes, cooling coils etc. to keep dirt and bugs out.
Have your filters cleaned regularly; not only for your health but as dust builds up airflow will decrease as will the effectiveness and efficiency
Install ceiling insulation the best you can afford, even a small area uncovered can act like a heater.
Ensure that your roof space is adequately ventilated. During summer, your roof space can reach temperatures over 60°C. Metal roofs will need vents.
Install the outdoor air-conditioner unit on the shady side of your home and make sure there is adequate ventilation.
Creating air movement through the house can make temperatures of 24-27ºC quite comfortable, so set the thermostat to ensure that no active cooling occurs below this level and circulate air with the air conditioner's fans or other fans. Each 1°C temperature change can add as much as 10% to your costs.
Set the temperature as low as you comfortably can. Generally this is between 18-21°C. Each 1°C increase can add as much as 10% to your heating costs.
Don't start your unit on a high temperature. It is more efficient to turn it on earlier at 21°C and have it slowly warm the room.
At night, close blinds or curtains to reduce heat loss.
On sunny days, open your blinds and curtains to allow warm sunlight in, especially north-facing windows.
Install draught-stoppers and seal your home’s leaks
Dress appropriately so that you don't have to set your temperature higher than needed. After all putting on a jumper costs far less than heating your house.
Use ceiling fans at low speed or on winter setting (reverse) to circulate (push down) the warm air.
Turn air-conditioners on early on very hot days rather than waiting until your home or workplace becomes hot.
Ensure that the outside coils, pumps and other equipment are in a cool place and well ventilated. This helps improve the unit's performance.
Close blinds and curtains during the day to keep the heat out. When operating a refrigerative air conditioner, always ensure windows and doors are closed so the cool air does not escape.
Add a boxed pelmet over existing curtains, and close the gaps at the bottom and sides of the curtains, to help reduce the heat that creeps through windows.
External window shading is more efficient than curtains and blinds.
If you come home to a hot house, first open your doors and windows to flush out the hot air before switching on your air-conditioner. This will not only save you money it will cool your house down quicker.
Cool the house at night by opening your windows if possible.
Set temperature as high as you feel comfortable. Generally this is 24°C and above. Each degree you lower the thermostat, energy consumption increases by about 10%.