Houston expert shares tips on how to keep your home cool without over working A/C units during heatwave

Ed Newby has been very busy all June.

The Allstar Conditioning and Heating Services co-owner said he’s been servicing a number of broken or malfunctioning HVAC systems across the Houston area as more people are looking to stay cool amid a heatwave.

“A properly maintained system is the key to surviving the air conditioning heat right now,” Newby said.

Newby added that having your unit serviced twice a year, once before summer and once before winter, is highly suggested to make sure everything is in working condition prior to peak seasons.

He also suggests changing small air filters once a month to ensure the filters aren’t clogged and are preventing airflow, and changing larger filters every six months.

The heating and cooling expert said if you have ceiling fans, turn them on to circulate the cool air and close blinds to keep the heat from the sun from getting inside.

Newby said with outside temperatures reaching 100 degrees, he’d steer clear of the 20-degree rule, which suggests setting your thermostat 20 degrees lower than outside temps.

“A house at 78 degrees, personally, to me, is too hot,” he added. “An air conditioning is a dehumidifier, it’s meant to cool the house down. A lot of reasons we have service calls is because they have the thermostat up too high.

Newby warns against setting your thermostats too low, like at 65 degrees. He said that can overwork the unit and your home may never reach those temps. He said the sweet spot is around 75 when the outside temps are in the triple digits.

Newby said investing in a digital thermostat can help you keep save energy while you’re away and get a head start on keeping it cool before you arrive home.

“Ideally, if you’re coming home at 5:00 pm, you’re setting that temperature or thermostat to about 2:00 pm where it can start working so by the time you walk in it’s where you want it,” Newby said.