It can be a real pain when you need AC repair done during the summer months and often very uncomfortable and even fatal if you have small children or the elderly in an unconditioned home during the hottest months. Though accidents happen and you may need AC repair even if you keep your AC in good condition, there are ways to hopefully keep yourself from needing air conditioning repair and even cut down on your cooling costs. Heating and cooling costs use up almost half the energy in the average American home. Improper installation, a lack of maintenance, or out of date technology can all contribute to driving that percentage up, as well as your bills. So what are some common AC repair issues and how can you keep them from happening?
- Badly Maintained
- Not enough refrigerant
- Bad Installation
- Fuses and Circuit Breakers
Not keeping your air conditioner maintained or serviced can often lead to problems. Generally speaking, an air conditioning unit should last you between 10-15 years if it’s well kept up. But if air filters aren’t changed regularly (they should be swapped out every one to there months) and your air conditioning coils aren’t cleaned, you can run into some problems, including your compressor and fans not working.
You can do both these things yourself with items you have on hand. Warm water and mild detergent can be used to clean the air conditioning coils and simply rinsing down an air filter with warm water, shaking it to remove any dust or debris, and then letting it air dry will keep your filters cleaned.
Not having enough refrigerant can be due to two things: either it didn’t get enough when it was installed or it’s leaking, which is harmful to the environment. If it’s leaking, it needs to be fixed right away and more refrigerant should not be added! You’ll need to get an air conditioning company to send a technician in to fix the leak, test their fix, and and then put the right level of refrigerant in. This is not something you should be doing yourself.
Maintaining the right balance of refrigerant keeps your AC unit working at its most efficient. The manufacturer should specify a charge that’s optimal to your unit.
If your air conditioner was improperly installed, the chances of you needing AC repair become much higher. Ducts that leak and low airflow are usually a result of bad installation and a refrigerant problem can often stem from an improper first installation.
You’ll probably need a technician to come out and reinstall it the right way this time. If you’re doing preventive maintenance, a technician may catch these issues before they become a problem.
If your air conditioner suddenly stops working, you should first check the fuses and circuit breakers to see if they’ve blown. The unit should cool down (wait about five minutes) before the breakers get reset. Often, simply resetting the breaker can reboot the system and you’re good to go again.
Other common issues involve compressor or fan control failure, problems with the sensor, and drainage issues, all of which can be fixed with a technician’s help.
What To Look For In an Air Conditioning Company?
You obviously want a company with plenty of experience (and one that’s licensed by the Contractors State License Board) — but check and see if they’re up to date on new technologies and installation processes. You want a company with a reputable and solid background, but also one that’s not afraid to embrace new trends and try what’s up and coming in the market.
Take a few different bids or estimates from companies to compare and contrast. Shopping around is never a bad thing! The company should come out and take a look at your property so they can get a feel for the work that will need to be involved.
Asking friends and family for recommendations is also another great way to find a reliable AC company who can help you with your installation and maintenance needs.
Avoid AC repair when you hire a trustworthy AC company for proper installation and keep your air conditioning unit in good condition.