Are you changing your AC filters?

By Amanda MacMillan
August 04, 2016

This article originally appeared on Time.com.

All-time summer heat records keep buckling under the weight of rising global temps—a trend that hits home, literally and figuratively, when you receive your monthly air conditioning bill. Unfortunately, mistakes you’re making with your home AC may be undercutting its efficiency, effectiveness, and safety, experts say.

“If you have a badly maintained system, it can become contaminated with microorganisms that may be harmful if inhaled,” says Mark Mendell, a staff scientist with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Indoor Environment Group. Mendell mentions asthma problems and allergies as some of those possible harms.

Here are eight of the most common mistakes people make when it comes to home AC, and some simple adjustments that can save your lungs and wallet.

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