By Julie Curnow

How to Use Air Conditioning in a Heatwave

The Bureau of Meteorology has forecast a scorching week ahead in Perth with temperatures of 35 degrees to 41 degrees from 4th to 11 February 2016. Here are some tips on how to use your air conditioning in this severe heatwave.

Tips for reverse cycle air conditioners

Reverse cycle air conditioners (ducted reverse cycle, wall splits and cassettes) use refrigerant to cool the air so they are very effective but the running cost really mounts up over extended periods. So the trick is to make your reverse cycle aircon work efficiently:

  1. Close doors to rooms that are not being treated
  2. Close curtains and blinds during the day to stop heat magnified by your windows
  3. Vacuum your air conditioner’s filter every 3 months (Access by opening the return air grill in ducted systems and flipping up the fascia in wall splits)
  4. Run your air conditioning at a sensible temperature for sensible periods. A setting of 24 to 27 degrees for longer periods is more efficient than a shorter blast at 20 degrees. If you have economy mode use it
  5. Turn your bedroom aircon on 30 minutes to an hour before you go to bed. Turn your aircon off at night and if practical keep a window open to trap any nighttime breeze
  6. Help move the chilled air with a ceiling fan
  7. With ducted reverse cycle use the iSave mode during the evening and overnight. If you don’t have an iSave use your fan mode if there is sufficient breeze to be drawn into your return air grille.  Doors and windows need to be open to expel the hot air.

Using Evaporative Air Conditioning in a Heatwave

When it is going to be super hot use pre-cooling, i.e. run your evaporative air conditioner on low whilst your house is still a comfortable temperature. This prevents excessive heat build-up. You can keep it running 24/7 until the hot spell ends. You can turn the aircon on to fan only over night if the night temperatures are in the mid 20s or keep it running over night if the temperature are close to 30 degrees. Using your evaporative cooler for so long may sound drastic but it is an affordable solution as the evaporative has a low running cost (approximately 6 cents an hour) and is designed to run for extended periods.

By keeping the air constantly cool it is easier to maintain a comfortable temperature rather than waiting until the peak heat of the day and then trying to dispel all the hot air. This is particularly effective in Perth’s double brick homes as it ensures the bricks don’t get the chance to heat up and start radiating heat.  If a particularly hot spell (like 4-11 Feb 2016) is predicted you may notice that running the aircon for days on end will cause some moisture build-up in your home, this is normal as the evaporative system works by adding water to the air drawn into your home.

If it is not practical for you to keep doors and windows open all day or over night look at installing a security relief vent so you can use your aircon on low with doors and windows closed. Read our blog on the security relief vent and how it can also save your power bill. If you are not comfortable installing the grille yourself, Air & Water can do it for you. Just call us on 6363 5343 for pricing and to book it in.

If you find your air conditioner just can’t cool enough then contact Air and Water Residential in Perth on 6363 5343. We supply and install all types of air conditioner and are a specialist dealer for leading brands including Daikin, Panasonic, Toshiba, Carrier and Cool Breeze. We are confident we can provide you with an air conditioning solution to meet your needs and budget.

Pin this image to your board to remind you how to keep your air con costs down:

Save money on your airconditoning bill with these tips

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