By now, you probably know that we're in for 90-plus degree weather over the next few days. So what better time to revisit our heat wave-specific advice?
A/C safety: An air-conditioning unit is safest if given an entire outlet to itself, according to the Department of Energy's guidelines. So if you're planning to add a power strip or an extension cord to a room, do it on a different outlet than the one that controls your A/C to avoid a power surge.
Keeping costs in check: There are several tricks to save you from a shocking Con Ed bill: Try to keep your A/C at 78 degrees. Every degree colder will cost 6 percent more on your energy bill. Also, check out the CoolNYC to see how you can control your A/C units from afar and turn them on right before you come home, rather than keep them on all day while you're not there.
Avoiding a moldy situation: If you happen to have PTAC units (those combination heater/air-conditioner units), make sure they've been cleaned recently, as they tend to attract mold.
If your A/C dies and you need a new one: Go with name brands that offer warranties, and buy from a store with a good service team. Many of the top brands offer a wide range of prices. Also, prepare to pay your super or porter about $75 bucks to install your new A/C (it's your responsibility to install it/have it installed, not the building's). And we suggest you read over these installation tips before you — or any one else — does it (yes, you need brackets, and yes, you need to seal the area around the a/c unit).