Answered: Cleaning the AC and Other Cooling Questions
Feb 23, 2024
They say knowledge is power, and that’s undoubtedly the truth when talking about your air conditioner. While complicated repairs are best left to professionals, it’s helpful to have a practical understanding of your air conditioner and how to solve common AC issues.
Knowing how your AC works and the frequent problems it faces will allow you to deal with simple problems without needing to call an HVAC specialist every time. This not only saves you cash on minor service calls, but knowing when to reach out to a professional can help prevent small issues from escalating into catastrophic repairs.
Your AC is a fundamental part of your home comfort. Because of that, you should always err on the side of caution and call a NATE-certified professional for air conditioning repair in Warrenton if you're uncertain about any aspect of your air conditioning system’s operation or maintenance.
Here are some typical questions people ask our experts about their air conditioners:
1. How Should I Clean My Air Conditioner?
Cleaning an air conditioner is a smart way to make sure it runs efficiently, and very well could extend the life of your unit.
The most effective action you can take on your own is to change the air filter in your air conditioner. The filter traps dust, pollen, pet hair and other debris, and removes those contaminants from the air circulating throughout your home. If your AC filter becomes choked with debris, the air conditioner has to work harder than it should in order to force air through the filter. A clean filter traps the airborne debris while still allowing air to flow efficiently through the system.
Replacement filters can be purchased at most popular home improvement stores, hardware stores or can be purchased from your local HVAC specialist. A good way to make sure you get the proper filter is to look at your old one before you head out for the store, jotting down the size of the filter. If you’re not familiar with filters, it’s also a smart idea to note the filtration level of the current filter if you are trying to buy something similar.
For comprehensive service of your air conditioner, contact the experienced professionals like the crew at Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning to do scheduled maintenance on your unit. They’ll inspect your system, clean or lubricate parts that need cleaning and look for worn-out parts and potential issues.
2. How Should I Clean the Air Conditioner Coils?
In addition to ensuring your indoor air conditioning unit is working efficiently, it’s necessary to tend to your outdoor unit. Cleaning the coils on the outdoor unit of your AC is a simple way to improve its efficiency and can extend the life of your entire system.
The coils, which include extensions called fins, are used to release heat from the refrigerant into the cooler air outside. This brings down the temperature of the refrigerant, which then goes back inside your home so it can take in more heat from the air inside your home. Washing the fins and the coils is a way to help them release heat more efficiently.
To clean your air conditioner’s fins and coil:
1) First, shut down power to the outdoor unit. It’s best to flip the power switch off, instead of turning the thermostat off.
2) Lift off the top of the outdoor AC so you can reach the inside of the unit. Then, taking care not to pull hard on any cords or attachments, safely set the top to the side.
3) Put a cleaning solution on the fins, starting at the top and working down. Commercial coil cleaners are available and commonly found in both the canned aerosol spray from as well as in the form of foaming solutions that are applied with your garden hose.
4) Follow directions on the product to apply. For most cleaners, it's advised that you spray the product on, let the cleaner soak in for a short period of time to dissolve the grime and then softly spray it off with a garden hose. Be cautious not to spray too hard, because that could damage the coils or fins!
5) Secure the top back on the unit and then wait for the coils and fins to dry before turning the unit back on.
3. How Long Can Air Conditioners Work?
The life span of an air conditioner depends on the type of unit, its quality, how well it's maintained and how often it's used. However, experts say you should start looking into air conditioner replacement after about 12-15 years.
One of the best ways to get the most mileage out of your system is through regular conditioner maintenance. Maintenance service from Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning consists of cleaning and inspecting the machinery, as well as changing out the dirty filter and mending any worn-out or broken parts. To keep your unit operating as long as it can, call us today to schedule air conditioning maintenance in Warrenton.
4. What Size Air Conditioner Should I Have?
Choosing the right size of air conditioner for your home is crucial for keeping comfort and efficiency. Here are some points to think about when deciding what size air conditioner is right for your home:
Square footage: The amount of space you need to cool is one of the key factors. More expansive spaces necessitate more cooling power.
Home insulation: Well-insulated homes retain cool air better, which should reduce your cooling needs.
Climate: If you are living in a hotter climate, you'll require a more powerful air conditioner compared to a person living in a cooler environment.
Number of windows: Windows frequently let in heat, especially when they're south-facing or not well-insulated.
Number of occupants: More people in the house means greater body heat, which may influence your cooling needs.
Current HVAC system: The size and capability of your current system can provide a starting point for determining what you need.
Due to the fact the size of your air conditioner is so essential to your home’s comfort, you will almost certainly want a professional opinion. At Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning, we take the time to fully understand your family’s lifestyle, comfort needs and the many other factors such as your home’s insulation level and size. This attention to detail and commitment to customer service is why Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning is known for superb air conditioning installation in Warrenton.
5. What Is the Cost of a New Air Conditioner?
While prices vary depending on the type of the unit and your home’s unique requirements, a new AC generally costs between $5,000 and $12,500 to purchase and install. The good thing is that new air conditioners are designed to be exceptionally efficient, so they do more with less power when compared to older units.
The price of an air conditioner is affected by several factors during the manufacturing process, such as the cost and availability of raw materials, manufacturing and labor costs in addition to federal regulations that can impact the design.
Know these are average costs and prices can vary. It's always smart to get numerous quotes from trusted HVAC companies before making a purchase. If you’re considering air conditioning replacement in Warrenton, get in touch with Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning. We will schedule an appointment to provide you with a free estimate, explain the process and help connect you with available rebates or discounts.
6. Why Do Air Conditioners Freeze Up?
An air conditioner freezing up can be a consequence of multiple factors, all of which boil down to the system's inability to efficiently transfer heat. If your AC is experiencing issues causing it to freeze up, it is more than likely time for air conditioning repair.
Here are some frequent triggers for AC freezing up:
Poor airflow: If the air isn't flowing correctly through your AC system, it can't adequately absorb heat. This could be due to a dirty air filter, something stopping air from flowing through the return air ducts or a failing fan.
Low refrigerant levels: If your air conditioner is running low on refrigerant, it may get too cold and freeze up. This is frequently because of leaks in the refrigerant lines.
Very Chilly outdoor temperatures: Running an air conditioner when it's very cold outside can cause the system to freeze. Most units aren't designed to function in temperatures below 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius).
Mechanical failures: Broken thermostats, damaged blower motors and issues with the relay or control board can all contribute to an AC unit freezing up.
Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning is the Trusted Source for Air Conditioning Service in Warrenton.
At Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning, we will make your home a comfortable and soothing place. Our qualified technicians are up-to-date on the latest industry training and trends, and are knowledgeable on a wide variety of systems. That’s why community members make us the first choice for air conditioning repair in Warrenton and neighboring towns.
If you’re wanting to upgrade or its time for a new unit, we’ve got you covered there too, with our top-notch air conditioning installation in Warrenton. No matter what, we can help you solve your cooling issues!
Contact Schraer Heating & Air Conditioning today at 636-456-5041 to schedule an appointment or no-cost estimate!