A functional air conditioning system is essential for homeowners who live in warm climates. Without the cool air that an AC unit provides, it would be difficult to keep indoor air temperatures at a comfortable level.

It can be very expensive to replace an air conditioning unit, especially if the unit fails during the hottest time of the year. While no AC unit is designed to last forever, there are some simple things that you can do to help extend the life of your AC unit well into the future.

1. Close Your Curtains or Blinds

Natural light is something that you will hear real estate agents and architects talk about in great detail. While it's nice to have sunlight streaming into your home at all times, allowing too much natural light in could be detrimental to your AC unit.

Natural light has the ability to raise the ambient air temperature inside your home. This causes your AC unit to have to work harder to keep your home cool.

Doing something as simple as closing the curtains or blinds during the brightest hours of the day can significantly reduce the workload of your cooling system. An AC unit that doesn't have to work as hard will usually be able to function efficiently over a longer period of time.

2. Set a Reasonable Temperature

Another simple thing that you can do to help extend the life of your AC unit is choose a reasonable temperature for your thermostat setting. Many homeowners make the mistake of lowering their thermostat setting as the outdoor temperature rises.

While you need to set your thermostat at a lower temperature to keep your home cool, setting it too low could cause your cooling system to go into overdrive.

Experts suggest that you use the 20-degree rule when setting your thermostat. You should keep your AC set at no more than 20 degrees below the outdoor temperature.

A 20-degree difference is enough to maintain a cool and comfortable interior, but not so drastic that it puts added stress on your AC unit.

3. Keep Your AC Unit Clean

Most modern AC systems have an outdoor component. The condenser, which is located outside your home, is responsible for drawing in air from the surrounding environment and cooling this air for delivery throughout your home.

Anytime the flow of air through the condenser is restricted, unnecessary stress is placed on your AC unit. Clear away leaves, branches, and other debris from your condenser to keep your AC unit running strong.

Contact a company like MES for more information about air conditioning systems.