Another hot summer is upon us. If your air conditioning system needs to be replaced, Tucson Electric Power offers incentives that will help reduce your upfront costs – and lower your monthly electric bills – while keeping your family cool and comfortable.

“Home cooling and heating is the largest energy expense in your home. With summer temperatures typically topping 100 degrees, air conditioning is essential for health and comfort,” said Francisco Castro, TEP Manager of Energy Programs. “Customers who need to replace their AC units can find some financial relief in rebates from TEP.”

Through our Efficient Home Program, customers can receive incentives of up to $900 on the purchase of an ENERGY STAR® AC/heat pump combination system with the early retirement of an old, inefficient system. To receive the rebate, the system must be installed by a TEP-authorized contractor.

Time to Replace?

Arizona’s intense summer heat shortens the lifespans of even properly maintained AC systems to about 12-15 years – compared with up to 20 years for AC systems in cooler climates.

According to ENERGY, there are some signs that your AC might be on the blink. “If your AC system is nearing the end of its useful life, requires frequent repairs, makes noises or no longer cools your home, you may need to replace your system,” said Castro.

ENERGY STAR certified systems are rated for high efficiency and can reduce your energy costs every month. A TEP-authorized contractor can recommend an AC system that is suitable for your home and is properly installed to produce energy savings and perform for many years.

Regular Maintenance

In some cases, all your AC may need is a little TLC. Just like regular oil changes for your car, your AC system needs regular maintenance to perform efficiently and extend its life. Notes Castro, “Regular maintenance is less expensive than repairs and prevents problems before they occur. It’s definitely worth your while to have your AC system inspected annually.”

TEP offers residential customers rebates on refrigerant charging, indoor and outdoor coil cleaning, and the installation of a Western Cooling Control™. This device adjusts the AC fan so that it runs for a few extra minutes after the air conditioner turns off, which delivers the cooled air that’s stored in your air ducts into your home. In all, you can save up to $205 on a complete AC tune-up with TEP’s rebates.

Uneven heating and cooling in your home, drafts or excessive dust can indicate leaky ducts that allow hot air and particulates to enter your home and cooled air to escape. TEP offers rebates of up to $300 for a TEP-authorized contractor to test for leaks and seal your ductwork. Sometimes sealing ducts can remedy the problem without having to invest in a new AC system.

“Probably the most important thing you can do to keep your AC system in good working order and working efficiently is to replace the air filter monthly or as recommended,” Castro noted. “Clean filters allow your system to work more efficiently so it uses less energy.” A good way to remember is to replace your filters when you pay your monthly electric bill.

Other Low Cost Cooling Options

Besides keeping your air conditioning system in peak operating condition, there are other low- or no-cost measures to keep your home cool this summer. Adding insulation, caulking around doors and windows, installing door sweeps and closing shades and curtains to keep out the sun’s heat will all help reduce the need to use air conditioning and lower your energy costs.

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