5 Myths about HVAC

When it comes to your HVAC system, there are a lot of myths floating around, ranging from ideas about how your air conditioner should run it to how it ought to be maintained. Hence, it’s very important to understand which ones are true and which are bunk so that your electricity bill doesn’t skyrocket, here are the top five myths about your HVAC system, and why you should ignore the awful guidance.

#1 – Set the atmosphere for a lower temperature if you actually need to cool the house faster. Bogus!

Preferred Series Central Air Conditioner

Preferred Series Central Air Conditioner

This one makes sense on the surface, but your air conditioner actually does not work this way. The HVAC system works by taking hot air and replacing it with cold air. It functions at exactly the same rate whether you are attempting to cool the home by five degrees or fifteen. The same is true in the winter when you turn the furnace on. Setting the heat for a higher level doesn’t magically make the furnace work harder or heat the house any faster.

#2 – Get a larger system for better efficiency. False!

Not only is this myth bogus, it can cost you a small fortune. When the air conditioner is too large for the square footage it’s supposed to cool, it cools the dwelling too quickly and shuts afterward down before it can begin dehumidifying the air. You will eventually end up with an extremely cool but moist setting, and that can be miserable (and bad for your health). Furthermore, the system will cycle on and off rapidly, and this only wears down the parts faster and causes your electricity bill to increase due to all that cycling.

#3 – Keep doors open through the entire dwelling to create the best home temperature. Bogus!

There is simply no motive to cool or heat rooms that are not being used. Conditioned air will be pushed through any open port, so it is better to close off the ports to rooms you aren’t using and push that air back to the areas you’re using. Shut the doors to optimize efficiency and reduce energy use. If possible, put a draft dodger under the door to further isolate the unused space.

#4 – Use fans to make the air conditioner more effective. False!

Your HVAC system uses a unique pattern of air flow throughout the home to use. Running a fan really interrupts that flow and can cause more harm than good. Generally speaking, there is no motive to run fans, so save a little cash and leave all the fans off. Folks generally run ceiling fans considering that they’ll disperse the air through the house, but this only drives up your electricity bill unnecessarily. [Editor’s Note: If you want to use fans in your home, that’s an OK idea too, but you should probably turn off your air conditioner first.]

#5 – Air conditioners pull a lot of energy. True & False!

This one is both true and false. It’s accurate that your air conditioner does pull a lot of energy, but is the issue you are facing related to your air conditioner or to your poorly insulated house? The reality is this: It does not cost nearly as much to cool a well-insulated house as it does to cool a drafty one. People in many cases are tempted to leave windows open and just use ceiling fans to remain comfy instead of overusing their air conditioner and running up their electricity bill. Unfortunately, this does nothing for the humidity, the temperature won’t cool very much, and those ceiling fans could wind up costing as much to run as the air conditioner. Before you resign yourself to warm temperatures and determine you can’t afford to use the air conditioner, consider making changes around the house to make it more energy efficient.
These myths cost folks a good deal of cash and discouragement each year. Nevertheless, you don’t have to believe the myths any more. Close off unused rooms, invest in the appropriate sized HVAC system, and switch off the fans to love a house that’s the right temperature through the year, complete with a reasonable electricity bill.