Air conditioning is a staple in most households. Your air conditioner can keep you from overheating when temperatures rise. However, no AC unit is without its problems. Over time, even the best air conditioner may need repair. Here are four things every AC owner should know:
1. You should change your filter frequently.
Your AC filter removes unwanted particles and debris from the air. This can make the air in your home cleaner and safer. However, your AC's filter also plays an integral part in its functionality. A clogged filter will cause your AC to work less effectively. You should plan to change your filter at least every three months during times of regular use. However, if you own animals that shed, you may need to change it as often as once a month. Some air conditioners contain a sensor that let you know when the filter is full.
2. You should ensure the space behind the AC is clear.
Air conditioners work by drawing in air, cooling it, and expelling hot air out of your home and cool air inside it. Each step in this process is crucial to the overall function of your air conditioner. If the flow of air behind your AC unit is inhibited, hot air may be forced back into your home or your AC might overheat. Avoid problems by ensuring that the space behind your air conditioner is clear. Don't store things directly behind it, and make sure you cut away any foliage that threatens to block the vent.
3. You should take care of repairs immediately.
Before your air conditioner breaks, there are usually warning signs that something is wrong. You may notice that your AC is cooling the air less efficiently, or your utility bill may inexplicably become more expensive. Unusual noises or water leaking into your home are other signs that your air conditioner is broken. Call an air conditioning repair service at the first sign of trouble. This can save you money in the long run, since you will catch the problem before it becomes more expensive to repair.
4. You should plan to replace your air conditioner eventually.
With proper maintenance and repairs performed by experienced technicians, your air conditioner should serve you well for a long time. However, eventually, every air conditioner will wear out. According to SF Gate, you should expect to replace a central AC unit after 12–15 years. Around that time frame is when your AC's compressor may fail, and it's often cheaper to purchase a new unit than to repair it.
For more information on air conditioning repair, contact an HVAC contractor.