Maintaining your Home

Air Conditioning System

If your home has a central air conditioning system, the following information can help you get the maximum benefit from it.


The registers throughout your house help to regulate the flow of air to maintain the desired temperature. By opening and closing the registers and dampers, you can regulate the amount of cool air that enters a room.  Once the registers and dampers are adjusted, they will work with the thermostat to maintain the temperature of your home.  Closing registers and doors to rooms not in use is a good way to reduce cooling costs.  If you have a combined air-conditioning and warm air heating system, the same registers and dampers will be used to regulate the flow of the heat to the rooms.  In addition to the air outlets, your house will have an air return register.  Many houses have more than one.  Neither these nor the other registers should ever be obstructed by furniture, drapes, or other objects.


Most central air conditioning systems have an air filter to help keep the air in your home clean. The instruction manual for your cooling system will tell you the location of the filter and how to clean or replace it. (see also Heating System)


Typically, homes have been insulated so that you can regulate the inside temperature in a cost-effective manner.  Open doors, windows, and fireplace flues and clogged filters can negate the effects of insulation and cause inadequate cooling (or heating).

Annual Inspection

Like any heating system, a central air conditioning system should be checked and cleaned periodically by a professional. (see your instruction manual for the frequency of this care)


Your electric or gas appliances are accompanied by instruction booklets and other papers. Read all instruction literature carefully and remove, fill out, and mail any postcards necessary to record warranties.  Keep a list of the authorized service agencies with each instruction booklet.If an electric appliance fails to operate, be sure it is plugged in before you call a repair service.  If the appliance is separately wired, be sure the circuit breaker is on. (see Circuit Breakers) If a gas appliance fails to work, check to see if the pilot light is lit.  If you suspect a gas leak, turn off the main gas valve near the meter and call the gas company immediately. Warning: Do not light matches or smoke cigarettes in the vicinity of the suspected leak.

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