Once I purchased my first home, I realized that I needed to do my part in caring for my home appliances. In addition to reading the user manuals for my kitchen appliances and state-of-the-art plumbing system, I realized that I also needed to do a little research about HVAC. Because I had no experience with HVAC systems, I called out a professional to teach me a thing or two. It was fascinating to talk with him, and I was able to take notes about all kinds of important topics, such as maintenance, troubleshooting, and even shopping for a new system. This blog is all about understanding HVAC guidelines.
When you're paying big money for central air, you'd expect it to work properly and quickly. If that's not the case, there is probably something wrong with the system that you could fix to get better performance. Starting with some of the easiest fixes, and moving towards the more complicated, here are some ideas for troubleshooting an AC that is underperforming.
Are the Cooling Coils Dirty?
A common reason for an air conditioner to get gradually weaker is when the cooling coils haven't been cleaned in a long time. The coils act as a surface for heat to be exchanged with the air, and if parts of the coils are blocked by debris, there isn't as much surface area for these transactions to happen. That means it will take longer for the AC to work. The solution is simple; power down the AC and clean the coils with soap and water, consulting your user manual if needed.
Is the Air Filter Clogged
Find and locate the air filters within your air conditioning system. There may be one on the unit itself, as well as filters on your HVAC system. Both need to be replaced on a regular basis, or else cold air will have trouble circulating through the home.
Is the Condenser Unit Accessible?
The box outside of your home is the condenser unit. For it to work correctly, it needs to be clear; it pulls air through and releases heat. You might need to do a bit of landscaping if you notice that plants are getting sucked into the condenser. It's a good idea to hose down this unit as well, at least once a year, since small debris can get stuck in the condenser throughout the year.
Are You Having Thermostat Troubles?
When is the last time you calibrated the thermostat? If you aren't sure it's working correctly, this is an easy part to replace before you start getting into more expensive AC repairs.
Don't settle for an air conditioning system that doesn't get cold enough, or doesn't have enough power to cool your entire home. With either of these problems, a heating and cooling specialist, such as from Marcotte Air Heat & Refrigeration, can quickly tell you what the problem is and give you an estimate. These specialists are experts that can tell you what yearly maintenance needs to be done in the future to prevent a situation where you're unhappy with the cooling rates of your AC system.