As the summer months are approaching, it is more important than ever to have a functioning air conditioning system in your home. During the hot days of summer, your air conditioning system is most definitely working overtime. So it is during these extreme heat spells that most problems do occur. Due to the fact that all of the air conditioning systems in your area are experiencing this same weather, many systems tend to go down simultaneously, putting you on a list of systems that need fixing, and leaving you without air conditioning on some of the hottest days of the year. The best way to try and avoid this is by having regular maintenance done on your system, giving the technician an opportunity to find potential problems before extreme weather strikes.
Nobody wants to be without air conditioning during those unbearable summer heat spells. That's why it's important to understand some possible causes of your air conditioner breaking or turning off suddenly. Here are a few problems that can be avoided by scheduling regular AC maintenance in your Levittown home.
- The filter is dirty
Changing the air filter is one of the only responsibilities that the homeowner has when it comes to caring for an HVAC system. One of the most commonly asked questions our technicians receive is, how often should I change my air filter? There is no answer that holds true for every household. Someone that cleans there home every day, has no pets, and barely runs their air conditioning system, will have to change their filter a lot less than someone with 4 dogs, doesn't clean very often, and runs their air conditioning system constantly. The filter should be checked every month, and changed upon any signs of build-up. Having a blocked filter can cause a system to lose efficiency, and can put a strain on the fan motor, which can lead to premature failure of the motor or capacitor.
- Blocked condenser coil
Your condenser, otherwise known as the outside unit, uses a fan to force air over the condenser coil, this helps cool off the refrigerant, so that it can be compressed back into liquid form. Over time, the coil can become blocked with debris, not allowing the proper amount of airflow over the coil. One of the most important things an expert technician SHOULD do during maintenance is cleaning the condenser coil, ensuring proper airflow over the coil. This drastically increases the efficiency of a system and allows the technician to get a proper reading of the refrigerant levels, so that the system can be properly charged. Having a blocked coil can lead to large energy bills, or worse, it can cause premature failure of your compressor.
- Failed capacitor
The capacitor is a very important part of an air conditioning system. It provides a boost in power that the fan motor and the condenser needs when it first starts to run. Failed capacitors are by far the most common problem dealt with by technicians during extreme weather, due to how many times your system will turn on and off during these heat spells. A good technician will check the capacitor with an electrical meter during regular maintenance, to ensure it has proper capacity, giving your equipment a better chance of making it through the summer free of problems.
- Seized fan motor
Fan motors keep the air flowing, not only through the house but over the outside condenser coil. As a system gets older, the fan motor can begin to struggle to keep up with demand, and eventually quit. Fan motors are directly connected to the efficiency of the system, due to the fact that the system uses airflow to not only cool the refrigerant used by the system but also to distribute cool air through your home. Having a technician put eyes on your system every year gives him a chance to suggest replacement of a motor before it starts costing you money, or stops working.
- Improper refrigerant levels
The second most common problem that technicians come across, is an air conditioning system with low refrigerant levels. It is very important that an air conditioning system has a proper charge. An air conditioning system may still seem like it is working, even though it does not have the right refrigerant charge. But your system could be running 2 to 3 times longer than it would with the right charge, which can cost, well, 2 to 3 times more money than it would otherwise. A technician will always check the refrigerant charge during regularly scheduled maintenance and will suggest adding refrigerant if needed.
There are multiple reasons why your air conditioning system may not be running properly. However, regardless of the problem, the specialists at One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning® of Bucks County are available to help. For quick service and an air conditioning inspection in your Montgomery County, PA, home, call (267) 930-2733. Our specialists can detect the exact problem and either clean, repair, or replace your air conditioning system at any hour of the day.