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Direct sunlight can affect your air conditioner & thermostat

Direct sunlight can affect your air conditioner & thermostat

Have you ever faced the problem that your split system doesn’t maintain the desired temperature? Although the temperature settings seem to be alright, you still feel the home isn’t cooled the way it should.

Here’s the question for you: Isn’t your indoor unit and thermostat exposed to direct sunlight? In fact, this is one of the most common reasons for poor air cooling.

Poor thermostat placement leads to lower AC performance

Few of us know exactly how sunlight affects your AC unit and its performance, leading to far-reaching consequences. Let’s dive a little deeper into the matter.

One of the components of an air conditioner is a thermostat. The built-in sensors read the ambient temperature and are aimed at maintaining the desired temperature level in a room.

If the indoor AC unit and a thermostat are exposed to direct sunlight coming through the windows, the sensors are “deceived” thinking that this is the temperature in the whole room is higher than it really is. As a result, the air conditioner will work harder to cool the air. This can make the environment colder than it should be, bringing discomfort and increasing the risk of getting ill.

Beside misleading the thermostat, long exposure to direct sunlight can even damage it. Just think about it. If an air cooling system works harder to cool the air on a regular basis, this can gradually shorten its lifespan. Moreover, homeowners will soon have to pay higher energy bills. In the worst case, incorrect AC operation will cause the compressor to overheat, making a costly AC repair inevitable.

Is there a way to ensure the proper air conditioning performance without extra expenses? Yes! You’ll need to take some steps in order to protect your thermostat from direct sunlight.

How can I protect my thermostat from direct sunlight?

As we could already understand, thermostat placement has a vast impact on the efficiency of the air conditioner, its lifespan, the indoor comfort, sudden breakdowns and homeowners’ energy bills. Thus, thermostat installation needs a rational and wise approach.

Here are some tips on proper thermostat installation

  • Before the indoor unit and the thermostat installation, it’s necessary to choose the right place on the wall, where they won’t be affected by the sunlight. If the temperature sensors are already suffering from excessive heat, you can protect your thermostat from direct sunlight by closing curtains or drapes. Another way of minimizing sun exposure is putting plants in the way and stopping the sun rays from reaching the thermostat.
  • When placing a thermostat, it’s recommended to avoid drafts just as well. It may lead to incorrect temperature readings and, thus, lower AC performance. The air cooling system won’t even reach the set temperature, since it’ll think that the room is already cooled enough. So, avoid placing the thermostat near windows and doors to prevent it from cooling the home inefficiently.
  • The same goes for home heat-generating appliances. Such improper thermostat placement also leads to the distortion of surrounding temperature readings and constant AC malfunction and higher energy consumption.
  • Proper thermostat performance also depends on the humidity level of the room in or near which it’s installed. So, make sure that the thermostat isn’t exposed to higher humidity and excessive moisture. For example, the bathroom is a bad choice for installation. 
  • It’s important to ensure free space around the indoor unit of the split system and its thermostat and avoid any possible obstructions that can block the air flow.

Indeed, there are enough rules to stick to during the air conditioning system installation. For this kind of work, always choose a reliable HVAC contractor in Las Vegas. The afore-mentioned tips on proper thermostat placement will help you enhance the efficiency of your split system and avoid unwanted expenses on energy bills.

On our part, the team of Nevada Residential Services is available to advise on important matters and provide professional HVAC services in the Las Vegas area.