Extreme Heat & Your AC's Performance

Chicago area air conditioners are designed for our average hot days and not for sustained 100°+ days. A typical air conditioner is designed to keep your home 20° cooler than the outside temperature. If your system is older it may only keep your home 16-18 degrees cooler than outside.

For example: if it’s 100 outside and your A/C is getting to 80, it's doing it's job!

  • The extreme heat will cause your air conditioner to run continuously. This will not damage your unit.
  • Your unit was designed and sized for the average regional temperatures we experience 98% of the time. Turning down your thermostat will not make it blow colder air.
  • When outside temps reach near or over 90 degrees, it is normal for the temps to go up in your home during the hottest part of the day.
  • Check your vents. If the unit is blowing cold air, the A/C is working as best as it can during the extreme heat.

Once temperatures cool back down to normal summer temps, your air conditioner will catch up and resume it’s normal run cycle.

Although there is nothing you can do to control the outside temperature, there are several things to prevent the hot air from coming inside:

  • Change your filter! A new clean filter will help tremendously.
  • Close all windows, blinds, drapes, and doors in the entire home leading to the lower level.
  • During the hottest part of the day, turn off anything that produces heat such as stoves, dishwashers, lights, etc...
  • Spray down your condenser with hose

For more tips on extreme heat preparedness, visit: https://www.ready.gov/heat

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