It doesn’t take more than a summer of living in Naples, Florida, to realize you have a few weather challenges to face.
Summers here include oppressive heat and above-average humidity. The 264 days of sunshine the city averages might make it all worthwhile, but only If you’re cool, calm, and comfortable.
Surviving—and enjoying—the Florida heat depends on how well your cooling system maintains the optimal temperature inside your home.
You can buy an entire wardrobe of Hawaiian shirts, stock up on popsicles, and install a backyard pool, but if your HVAC system isn’t able to keep up with the heat, it’s all for nothing.
No need to break a sweat! We have a few timely solutions.
Read on and explore how you can maximize the power of your air conditioner to help you survive the heat in Naples.
Get to Know Your Thermostat
Humans help their bodies acclimate to hot climates by gradually spending more time in the heat. Of course, they also hydrate and wear loose clothing.
Is there anything you can do to make your home more comfortable when it’s hot outside?
If you aren’t as familiar as you’d like to be with your thermostat, now is the time to make friends. A well-managed thermostat is one key to maintaining comfortable indoor temperatures.
Start with a seasonal tune-up.
Dust off the outside of the thermostat with a soft brush. Do the same inside. You also clean any grimy buildup around the contact points with folded paper.
You should also check the batteries if you haven’t done so in the last few years.
Set your thermostat at the ideal temperature.
Energy experts received a lot of grief on social media when they suggested setting the thermostat to 82 degrees at night. They were more generous with their recommendation to keep the thermostat at 78 degrees during the daytime. We say start at 78 and if it’s too warm, move the thermostat down one or two degrees.
Make sure you understand the fan settings on your thermostat.
One mistake many homeowners make is to set the fan on LOW, MEDIUM, or HIGH. The optimal fan setting is AUTO. This gives the fan motor a break when the system is not running through the cooling cycle.
If you haven’t upgraded to a programmable thermostat, it’s a smart move to make.
Keep the Windows Closed During Florida Heat
That may sound like a no-brainer, but who doesn’t enjoy a fresh breeze coming in through an open window?
There’s nothing wrong with opening the windows in the evening, provided the outside temperature cools off. However, if the outside temperature is higher than the temperature inside your home, you’ll defeat the purpose.
If you live in a well-insulated home, you shouldn’t have issues keeping it cool without opening windows. A well-maintained HVAC system adds a needed boost. Keeping windows, curtains, and blinds closed during the day offers one more level of assistance for your air conditioner.
Did you know gaps between your windows and window frames allow cool air to escape? Likewise, hot air seeps in through unsealed windows.
If you notice hot spots around your windows, check the weather stripping. You can also purchase window film or install sun-filtering shades
Install Ceiling Fans
You might want to re-think if you think you don’t need ceiling fans because you have an air conditioner.
Just because the second Mrs. Hemingway swapped out all the ceiling fans in her Key Largo home with ornate Parisienne chandeliers doesn’t mean the old ceiling fans were useless. She not only irritated her famous husband, but she also likely suffered through many hot, humid days.
If you’ve removed the ceiling fans in your home, consider putting them back! Ceiling fans can help your air conditioner work more efficiently.
Here’s how it works:
When operating ceiling fans and the AC simultaneously, you may enjoy cooler indoor temperatures and lower cooling bills. While the ceiling fan won’t lower the temperature, it can keep you comfortable with a wind-chill effect. It helps you feel more comfortable due to the breeze on your skin.
To benefit from the wind-chill effect, make sure you set the fan to turn counterclockwise.
Naples Heat and Air Conditioner Maintenance
If you’re a snowbird or have friends who live in one of the colder states, you may think servicing your HVAC system once a year is sufficient.
Living in the Florida heat usually means servicing your HVAC system at least twice a year, especially with the ever-increasing heat people all over the state are experiencing.
When you consider that many people in Florida, especially in the Naples area, use their cooling systems year-round, it takes more than routine filter changes to keep air conditioners running smoothly.
What does air conditioner maintenance include? In addition to installing a clean air filter, your HVAC tech will:
- Clean the condenser and evaporator coils
- Inspect all the mechanical components
- Check refrigerant levels
- Inspect electrical connections
Regular maintenance means you’ll have an easier time dealing with the Florida heat. It also helps your HVAC technician spot potential issues that could lead to costly repairs.
Upgrade Your HVAC System
You could get between 15-and 20 years of service from a well-maintained air conditioner. If you’re cooling your home with an aging system, consider planning for a replacement.
HVAC technology continues to improve all the time. You’re not stuck with what worked great 10-20 years ago.
Today, you have options that may not have been available when you built your home. Consider one of these modern upgrades to your HVAC system:
- Split System with a Heat Pump
- Mini-split or Ductless System
- Packaged System
Before you decide on a new cooling system, it’s wise to talk with an HVAC contractor. They’ll come out to your home and do an assessment that will help ensure you get the right size system and the one that best suits your needs.
Talk to a Florida HVAC Specialist Today
As you can see, you have several ideas you can try right now to help you survive the Florida heat. From adjusting your thermostat to keeping windows closed, to routine maintenance, to upgrading your system, there’s a solution that will work for you.
The team at Florida Heat & Air understands how vital keeping cool in summer is to your well-being. Contact us today to schedule heat and air conditioning service. We can also provide a quote for a new HVAC system.