An air conditioner can be an important part of your home comfort system. It circulates, cleans, and dehumidifies the air in your home, helping to maintain a comfortable temperature year-round. Regular service and maintenance are essential to ensure optimal performance and efficiency, so it is important to know when and how often you should have your air conditioner serviced.
Most manufacturers recommend that you have your air conditioner serviced annually. A trained technician will inspect all components of the system thoroughly with an emphasis on safety, performance, operating efficiency, and longevity.
The tech will identify any potential problems that should be addressed before they become more serious (and expensive) issues. He or she may also recommend a professional cleaning and/or additional preventive measures that can extend its life span while improving efficiency.
Benefits of Regular AC Service
Regular and professional servicing of an air conditioner has many benefits. It ensures that your AC is functioning at peak performance levels and keeps it from consuming excess energy and running up your cooling bills.
It also helps to prolong the lifespan of the AC, so you don’t have to replace it too often. Regular maintenance can also help prevent minor AC issues from becoming major ones, reducing the risk of costly repairs in the future.
Finally, regular servicing improves indoor air quality by helping to ensure that allergens are kept out of your home, providing better health for you and your family. An experienced HVAC technician should inspect, clean, test, and adjust applicable components as necessary during an annual check-up service visit so that your AC operates as efficiently as possible all year round.
Signs that Indicate Need for AC Service
Before having an air conditioning technician come in for a service, it’s handy to know some signs that indicate the need for AC servicing. Here are a few common signs that can help you understand when servicing is required:
-Poor Performance: If your AC system doesn’t seem to cool rooms as well as before or you need to set the thermostat lower than usual, it could mean your unit is running inefficiently.
-Strange Noises or Smells: A barking, gurgling, or humming noise coming from an old AC system or a burning smell should always be cause for concern.
-High Energy Bills: If your last energy bill was unusually high compared with the same time period in previous months, it could signal a problem with efficiency levels.
–Water Leaks and Moisture Around Unit: Excess moisture around your unit could be due to clogged drains, condensation issues, or faulty seals; all of which can result in damage if untreated.
How to Find a Qualified Technician
Finding a qualified air conditioner repair technician can be tricky. The best way to start is by asking family, friends, and neighbors for recommendations. Note however that the right technician may differ by region or even town. In some cases, it might be necessary to involve a national or local trade association or your local Department of Consumer Affairs.
Once you have compiled a list of potential technicians, narrow it down further by considering:
-Training and qualifications
-Specializations in specific types of equipment
-Lengths of warranties offered
-Ability to provide references from past customers
-How long they have been in business
How much does it cost?
The cost of having your air conditioner serviced depends on a variety of factors including the type of system, the complexity of the job, and any additional services needed before or after the appointment such as cleaning or repair.
On average, you can expect to pay $300 for basic servicing depending on your location and local labor costs. Some companies may also charge additional fees for mileage or travel time if they need to service a unit located beyond their regular service area.
DIY AC Service Tips
If you choose to perform the maintenance yourself, ensure that you wear eye protection, gloves, and proper clothing when handling any components of your air conditioner. It’s important to be familiar with the safe handling procedures for each component before attempting any work on the AC unit.
Cleaning an Air Conditioner:
- remove the outer casing
- vacuum out any debris or dust from inside
- if necessary clean away any dirt buildup on the expanding coil with a damp cloth
- ensure all drain holes are clear so condensate can flow away
- check filters monthly and replace them if necessary
Checking Refrigerant Pressures:
- inspect lines for signs of wear or damage before taking readings
- take measurements using high/low side gauges correctly attached to access points in the system
- adjust as needed according to the manufacturer’s recommendations
- measure temperature across the inlet/outlet side of the blower motor first
- check that all ducts are properly connected without blockages
- test airflow using appropriate testing equipment such as a manometer
- examine all parts for any visible signs of damage or corrosion
- evaluate the cooling performance of the unit by checking air pressure, and temperature differences between supply and return vents in the home
In conclusion, DIY AC service presents many potential risks including electrical shock if not done safely and properly. Whenever possible it is best to have a qualified technician perform regular maintenance on your AC unit as they are experienced in diagnosing potential problems proactively.
Having your air conditioning system maintained regularly is an important part of ensuring that your unit runs properly and efficiently. By scheduling regular maintenance services, you can help protect yourself from unexpected breakdowns, increase the lifespan of the system and prevent serious damage.
In general, most manufacturers recommend having an air conditioning system serviced once a year — or every six months if you live in a hot climate where AC units are running almost daily. This is particularly important if your system uses R-22 refrigerant instead of newer EPA-approved R-410A refrigerant as this type may experience leakage over time.
Your chosen technician should be able to check for any worn out parts or outdated components, as well as making any necessary repairs and cleaning the air ducts to ensure optimum airflow exists for the greatest efficiency possible.
Some service companies will offer preventive maintenance contracts which can help ensure that the work is done on schedule if you’re unsure about how often to get service done.