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Bartels Heating & Cooling Blog

Helping Your AC Survive in a Heat Wave


The second half of this summer is going to be an extremely hot one, and we can expect some severe heat waves to hit our area. The central air conditioning system in your house will become a vital part of your life when the outdoor temperatures rise into the 90s and above. 

Can you depend on your air conditioning system to continue to work during heat waves? This is something you want to know right now because you don’t want to get trapped with a failed AC on one of the hottest days of the year. Our technicians offer 24/7 emergency air conditioning repair in Cincinnati, OH, but the hotter the day, the more emergencies we’ll have to deal with. We’ve put together some tips that will help you alleviate the strain on your AC during a heat wave so you won’t get trapped with an abruptly broken cooling system.

Did you have regular maintenance in spring? If not … have it done now

The best tool to help an air conditioner make it through a summer, any summer, is routine professional maintenance. We recommend having this job done in spring. If you’ve already had this job done for the year, then you have an AC that’s in the best possible shape for extreme heat. If you haven’t, it is absolutely not too late to have it done. This service removes much of the strain of aging from an AC and checks for potential future problems so they can be addressed proactively. 

Keep the thermostat as high a comfortable 

A heat wave isn’t the time to see if you can beat the hot conditions with a thermostat set down at 68°F. The amount of stress this places on the air conditioner to pump out heat from your house will be extreme and may cause it to overheat. Raise the thermostat to as high a temperature as your household finds comfortable. We recommend aiming for 78°F, or you could even try 80°F. Wear light clothing, drink lots of cold liquids, and use fans to help stay cool at a warmer thermostat setting.

Avoid using other heat-producing during the day as much as possible

To give your AC a break, don’t use appliances like the dryer, the oven, stove, or washing machine during the day when temperatures are highest. Save these activities for the cooler evening. It will take away an enormous extra source of heat the AC will need to overcome. 

Check that the condenser is clear and clean

The outdoor condenser is where the AC releases the heat it pulls out of the indoor air. The condenser must be clear on all sides and have clean coils to do this job. Otherwise, too much heat will get trapped in the AC and lead to the system overheating. Check that all debris and obstructions are removed from around the condenser for at least a foot. This includes trimming back plant growth. You can also clean the condenser using a hose on low pressure. (Don’t blast water into the condenser as it can harm the coil.)

Call us early when you notice anything amiss with your AC. We’ll help you head off a potentially bigger disaster!

Call Bartels Heating & Cooling “For a Comfortable Way of Life”! 

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