Most air conditioners sit in our backyard or next to the house without ever getting any attention. Most homeowners do not even know their air conditioners need maintenance. Having an annual maintenance plan for your AC unit will not only reduce breakdowns, but it will also extend the life of the unit. If your air conditioner breaks down and your technician tells you that you need a new air conditioner, get more than one estimate. Most air conditioning problems require repairing not replacing. Having an old air conditioner is not reason enough to replace it, but the age of the unit is a good starting point. Have your technician educate you on the latest air conditioning technologies. You can save as much as 30% in energy costs compared to early models.
What Are Some Common Air Conditioning Problems?
Dirty condenser coils can impede the transfer of heat, causing your AC unit to work harder, which means more wear and tear on the unit. The job of the condenser coils is to expel heat if the coil is covered in dirt and grime. That puts the AC unit at risk. Cleaning the coils are included in a maintenance plan.
Leaking air ducts can be responsible for cold air loss. Your ducts are in the attic, and in some cases, in the walls. Rodents or poor quality installation could be possible reasons your ductwork is releasing cold air into the attic. The release of cold air also causes your air conditioner to work harder because it takes longer to reach its programmed temperature.
Low refrigerant is mostly common in old units in some cases your AC unit can have a small leak. Refrigerant is what removes humidity and heat from your home. Without it, your home feels humid, and your unit works harder to try and cool the home.
Thermostat problems can cause your temperature to be incorrectly calibrated. The thermostat must be installed in an area that receives no sunlight from windows, or it will not reflect correct room temperature. Old dial-type thermostats have been known to be incorrectly calibrated. Recalibrating your thermostat is an easy fix, but upgrading to the latest in a programmable thermostat is the best recommendation.
A clogged drain can cause the water to back up and damage the system. When moisture is removed from the air, it drains into a pan then into a drain line; if the line gets clogged, the pan will fill up and harm the unit.
These are just a few air conditioning problems that are easily repairable.
How to keep your air conditioning working at peak performance:
- Inspect the air ducts in your attic for holes.
- Clean or replace dirty air filters.
- Clear out any brush and debris from around your air conditioner.
- Install the latest in a programmable thermostat.
- Most importantly, sign up for an annual HVAC maintenance agreement because an “Ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.”