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When homeowners’ air conditioners aren’t working correctly, they get curious about how these devices that they often take for granted work. Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about heating and cooling units:

1. Should I cover my AC unit in the winter?

The winter months are filled with excitement and merriment. There are school carnivals and plays, as well as festive parties and holiday get-togethers. It’s time to keep aside some of the appliances as winter is advancing, especially your air conditioning unit. You may have heard that covering your air conditioner with a cover during the winter helps protect your unit, but that’s actually a myth and can even cause more harm than good. The last thing you want is to uncover a significant issue with your air conditioner once spring rolls around.

2. Why does it smell when I first turn it on for the season?

When the day finally arrives to turn on your air conditioner for the first time, an unpleasant odor may be laced with the cold air. If you’re feeling grossed out, don’t worry—the smell usually dissipates after the first use. Still, proper AC maintenance before shutting down in the winter and again before restarting in the spring can prevent unpleasant odors.

3. Should I turn off my AC or furnace when I leave for work?

First, we’ll address the most common situation in this debate. Many homes are unoccupied during the weekdays when family members are at work or school. Can you save energy by turning off your air conditioner during those hours? Yes, you can. But the problem arises when you get home and turn your air conditioner back on. If you leave your system off throughout the day, temperature levels in your home will consistently rise. Temperatures will get so high that the amount of energy it takes to cool your home back down to a comfortable level will cancel out any energy that you saved by leaving your system off.

In addition to efficiency issues, there are other side effects of turning off your AC during the day. For example, if you have pets, it might be unsafe for them to be left alone in the heat during the day. Also, the last thing you want after a hard day at work is to come home to a hot and humid home. You might have to wait a few hours before your home cools back down to a comfortable level.

If you’re looking for help with your HVAC unit or need expert maintenance services, then get in touch with Mid Atlantic Heating & Air!