Air Conditioners – Frequently Asked Questions
While you don’t need to be an expert, it pays to know a few key facts about your air conditioner to make sure the process runs smoothly.
Air Conditioners & You
- What is HVAC/HVAC-R?
2. What should I know before calling to make an appointment?
Make a note of the model/serial numbers on your current unit. Be ready to talk about the structure of your home. This is especially important in helping your contractor determine the proper system type and size, among other necessary components.
3. How do I know if my furnace, air conditioner, or HVAC system still has a valid warranty?
Well, the easiest way would be to call us since we can easily check your files although there’s other ways. First of all, there’s two main types of warranties there’s the manufacturer’s warranty & service warranty. Most manufacturer’s give a five year warranty while most A/C companies give a one year warranty. It all depends on the company & brand. To get the most out of your warranty make sure to check out our Platinum Maintenance Agreement.
4. Should I replace or repair my unit?
This one can be tricky. The saying “all things age like wine fine” does not apply to air conditioners, in fact if your unit is 10 years or older it should probably be replaced. If you find yourself constantly needing repairs, you might need it replaced. Of course our experts can save you the headache with a free inspection.
Filters Are Friends
5. How often should I change my filter?
This question has many answers, it really depends on the number and type of occupants in your home. If you have many occupants, pets, or somebody with allergies than you should change it monthly. If you have a decent size family and maybe a pet than you can probably slide by changing it every 3 months. However, if you’re a single occupant in a small home or apartment, you can really worry about changing it twice a year.
6. Why change my air filter frequently?
Ah, the age old debate. Changing your air filter frequently will not only improve your air quality dramatically but it could also reduce your electric bills. Also, it could prevent your air conditioners from malfunctioning thus saving you hundreds on repairs.
7. Are all air filters the same, what’s the difference?
It’s typically recommended to go with the air filter suggest by your manufacturer but note that there are many differences. First, they vary in size just like air conditioners do. Secondly, they vary in quality since filters have varying MERV ratings. What is MERV? It stands for “minimum efficiency reporting value” and it varies from 1/20. Most air conditioners will readily accept air filters with ratings from 7-13 while higher rating air filters are more or less for places like hospitals. The rating also has to do with the amount of particles that the air filter will allow to pass through.
Air Filters Part II
8. What are washable filters?
Another solution when it comes to air filters are the washable kind. These types appeal to the environmentally conscious since they don’t have to worry about filling landfills with non-recyclable waste. Although these filters have a higher upfront price they save you money in the long run since you don’t have to replace them as often as the regular kind.
9. What are air filters made from, anyway?
A filter varies by the materials they are made out of. For example, disposable filters are composed of fiberglass. On the other hand, a polyester & pleated air filter catches more debris but also limits airflow in your home.
10. What exactly is a tune-up?
This can vary from company to company, but generally speaking it’s a service in which our technician inspects your AC and makes fine tuning changes. This could include anything from coil cleanings to topping off refrigerant.
11. How often should I get my air conditioners serviced?
Although a tune-up can be scheduled as necessary, we recommend you get them before the summer & winter starts. These seasons test your AC unit’s mettle and it’s best to make sure your AC is running as well as possible. This avoids otherwise expensive repairs, and luckily we have coverage plans. Contact us for more details!
12. Why is my AC unit making strange sounds?
Although an excess of sound doesn’t always mean that your AC isn’t working, it could mean that your AC could be running more efficiently. Remember that higher efficiency means a lower utility bill which in turn means more money in your pocket. What exactly is that weird noise though? Well, it could be many things like your compressor might not be insulated properly or it could be an electrical problem.
13. Why is my air conditioner freezing up?
There could be many reasons for this but we’ll highlight some of the most common ones below.
Low refrigerant: There might be a leak in your system in which refrigerant escaped & caused the freezing. Fortunately, a technician can easily fix this since it usually involves adjusting soldier joints & reducing friction between pipes.
Dirty evaporator coil: An evaporator coil gets dirty through the normal wear & tear of function but this indicates the air filter might be old & is cutting off air flow.
Defective blower motor: A blower motor can lose its rhythm in that it might be running at improper speed whether faster or slower.
Indoor Air Quality 101
14. What are some health benefits of clean air?
Customers who have trouble with asthma & allergies will greatly benefit from clean air. Of course, people who don’t suffer from such ailments can benefit as well as you can’t ever have a home that’s too clean. Speaking of which, an air conditioning system that is up to par with a high IAQ score will reduce the dust that accumulates in your home.
15. What is IAQ?
This term simply refers to the degree of air pollution present in either a home or business building. Did you know? According to the American Lung Association, exposure to air pollutants can be 100 times higher indoors than outdoors. Since most people spend 80-90% of their time indoors, your health could drastically improve with good air conditioning.