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Pumping out some cold air with your air conditioner this summer?

As we enjoy those warmer summer days, yet there's nothing quite like a cool and comfortable home when the sun really starts to set in. So we're here to help ensure you're getting the most out of your AC unit, with a focus on whether to keep them running continuously.

Know Your AC Unit

Identifying the type of air conditioning unit you own is the first step towards efficient usage. New Zealand homes commonly feature split systems for single rooms and ducted systems for entire homes. Understanding the capabilities and ideal operation of your system enables tailored and efficient use.

Set an Efficient Temperature

A crucial aspect of air conditioner use is the temperature setting. The Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) in New Zealand advises maintaining a summer setting of 24-25°C for a balance between comfort and energy efficiency. This setting prevents overexertion of the unit, leading to energy savings.

Smart Controls and Timing

Leverage timers and programmable thermostats to maximise efficiency. Programming your air conditioner to activate shortly before you return home or during the hottest part of the day enhances comfort and conserves energy. Continuous operation throughout the day, particularly when the house is vacant, is unnecessary and wasteful. Advanced air conditioners with smartphone connectivity offer even greater control and efficiency.

Maintenance Is Key

Efficiency is also dependent on regular maintenance. Cleaning or replacing air filters quarterly, or as specified by the manufacturer, ensures optimal airflow and unit performance, reducing energy use. Keep the area around the outdoor unit free from obstructions and ensure indoor vents are unblocked for maximum efficiency.

Enhance Home Insulation

A well-insulated home supports your air conditioner's efficiency. Effective insulation keeps cool air inside and hot air outside, lessening the demand on your air conditioning system. Ensure that windows and doors are properly sealed to maintain cool indoor temperatures.

Embrace Natural Cooling

Take advantage of cooler days and evenings by using natural ventilation. Turning off the air conditioner and opening windows can introduce fresh air and reduce reliance on artificial cooling. Fans are another energy-efficient option for circulating air within your home.

The Verdict on Continuous Use?

Running your air conditioner continuously throughout the day is generally not recommended in New Zealand. Such practice is not energy-efficient and can lead to unnecessary energy consumption and accelerated unit wear. Optimal use involves activating the air conditioner during peak heat or when the home is occupied. For milder cooling needs, consider alternative cooling methods like fans or simply opening windows.

Wrapping Up

Navigating the summer heat in New Zealand with an air conditioner requires a blend of knowledge, smart usage, and maintenance. By understanding your system, making use of smart technology, keeping up with maintenance, improving home insulation, and considering natural ventilation, you can achieve a pleasantly cool environment in an energy-efficient and environmentally friendly manner. The essence of smart air conditioner use lies not in the duration of operation but in the wisdom of its application!


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