The do's and don'ts of air conditioning - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

The do's and don'ts of air conditioning

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TRI-CITIES, WA - Summers in the Tri-Cities tend to require three things: plenty of water, sunscreen, and air conditioning. But sometimes it seems the AC quits working when we need it the most.

Like most appliances in your home, unfortunately there are a lot of things that can cause an AC unit to break down. Most people only think of their AC units when they need them, and can let the area around it become overgrown during the spring and fall...clogging the unit and damaging the moving parts inside.

Another big cause of breakdown? Waiting too long to fix minor problems.

"Similar to having the oil changed on your car every 3-4 thousand miles, you need to get a maintenance done at least once a year, preferably twice a year, spring and fall, and that will prevent breakdowns on really hot days," said Jason Lynch with Apollo Heating and Air Conditioning.

Other helpful tips?

Make sure your filters are in good working order and replace as needed.

Don't drop your AC temperatures too low. Most units are designed to operate best at around 74 degrees.

And contrary to popular belief, pushing it down to 65 won't get your home cool any faster.

Finally, do be patient when it comes to scheduling repairs. Just about all the repair shops are slammed with calls right now.

Meaning outside of emergencies, it might take a few days to get a maintenance crew to your home.