Air conditioning is crucial for lots of homes during the sweltering summer months in Saint Charles. However, the costs associated with running an AC are substantial. Discover how routine air conditioning service can lower AC repair costs, and embrace energy-saving habits to help your unit run more efficiently. With these tips, you’ll enjoy a comfortable home this summer without spending a lot.
What Routine AC Service Entails
Air conditioning maintenance is a reasonably priced, predictable annual bill that pays you back by lowering repair costs and increasing your unit’s life span. Here are some critical maintenance steps that help avoid air conditioner breakdowns:
- Change the air filter: A dirty filter restricts airflow and causes your air conditioner to work harder, burning more energy and increasing the risk of overheating. Replacing your air conditioner's dirty air filter with a clean one as part of your annual maintenance service call, and every 30 to 90 days throughout the year, boosts optimal airflow and efficiency.
- Clean the evaporator coil: The in-house evaporator coil can become covered in dirt and dust over time, reducing its ability to absorb heat. This can cause the refrigerant in the coil to freeze, keeping your air conditioner from running effectively. Cleaning the coil takes out this insulating layer and will make it easier for the refrigerant to perform this essential function.
- Clean the condenser coil: The exterior condenser coil emits heat absorbed by the refrigerant. If it’s blocked by cobwebs, grass clippings and other debris, the heat transfer process is reduced. Cleaning the condenser coil improves the unit’s efficiency greatly, reducing wear and tear on your air conditioner that could cause breakdowns.
- Straighten the coils’ fins: The aluminum fins on the evaporator and condenser coils can become bent, reducing airflow and reducing performance. Straightening the fins with a fin comb rearranges51 them to their original position to regain correct airflow.
- Lubricate moving parts: Friction in the motor and other moving components generates heat and causes unnecessary wear and tear. Routine lubrication minimizes friction, ensuring smooth operation and lowering the need for repairs.
- Monitor refrigerant levels: A low refrigerant charge is another reason why your AC can freeze up, producing longer run times, comfort problems and preventable AC repairs. An HVAC professional uses specific tools to check and adjust refrigerant levels as needed to verify proper operation and prevent a mid-season breakdown.
Other Ways to Reduce AC Repair Costs
Yearly maintenance is a crucial factor in lessening AC repair expenditures, but here are some other recommendations to help your air conditioner operate reliably all summer long:
- Turn the temperature up: Elevating the thermostat setting curbs the wear and tear on your air conditioner. Find a comfortable temperature and avoid lowering the temperature.
- Install a programmable thermostat: When set correctly, a programmable thermostat helps control your home’s temperature more efficiently, reducing the strain on your AC unit. An effective technique is to program setback periods of 7 to 10 degrees while you’re away or sleeping to save yourself on energy costs and further alleviate wear and tear.
- Seal air leaks: Gaps and cracks near windows and doors allow warm, humid air into your home. Apply caulk and weatherstripping to avoid overloading your air conditioning equipment.
- Put in additional insulation: A proper attic insulation level encourages stable indoor temperatures and will reduce your AC’s workload. If you can observe the attic floor or joists poking through the insulation you already have in your home, add more.
- Prevent solar heat gain: The sun’s heat warms your home, increasing the demand on your AC system. Putting in window coverings and closing the blinds or shades during the hottest times of the day blocks solar heat gain and lowers the risk of a mid-season breakdown.
- Use ceiling fans: The wind chill effect created by ceiling fans makes your room feel about 4 degrees cooler, which enables you to raise the thermostat setting without losing comfort. Remember to turn the fan off when you leave the room, as fans cool people, not spaces.
- Use a dehumidifier: For those who live in a humid part of the United States, elevated humidity levels can make your home feel cool but clammy, encouraging you to turn down the temperature. A whole-house dehumidifier takes away excessive moisture, giving your air conditioning a much-needed break.
- Clear out your vents123: Closed or sealed off air vents throw off the balance of return and supply air, which can cause your AC to break down. To avoid this, leave at least 80 percent of your registers open, and make sure no furniture, curtains or rugs accidentally hinder airflow. Enhance circulation further by opening the doors between the rooms in your home as much as possible.
- Install an energy-efficient air conditioner: If your AC unit is more than 10 years old, consider upgrading to a more energy-efficient model. In addition to enhanced efficiency, a new system is also much less likely to break down or have maintenance issues than an older unit, lowering your repair expenses in the long run.
Schedule Air Conditioning Repair in Saint Charles
By investing in regular air conditioning maintenance and following other recommended home-cooling habits, you’ll enjoy a comfortable interior with lower repair costs this summer. Golden Seal Service Experts offers quality air conditioner tune-ups to optimize efficiency and lengthen your air conditioner’s life span. We can also upgrade your AC unit if yours is past its prime.