They say knowledge is power, and that’s undoubtedly accurate when discussing your air conditioner. While challenging repairs are best left to professionals, it’s helpful to have a basic understanding of your air conditioner and how to solve general AC issues.
Learning how your AC works and the typical problems it faces will allow you to fix little problems without needing to call an HVAC specialist every time. This not only saves you cash on minor service calls, but knowing when to contact a professional can help prevent small issues from escalating into major repairs.
Your Air conditioning unit is a fundamental element 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 Michigan City if you're uncertain about any aspect of your AC's operation or maintenance.
Here are a few of the typical questions people ask our experts about their air conditioners:
1. How Do I Clean an Air Conditioner?
Cleaning an air conditioning system is an effective way to make sure it runs efficiently, and potentially could extend the life of your unit.
The most important step you can take on your own is to replace the air filter in your air conditioner. The filter traps dust, pollen, pet hair and other debris, and removes those impurities from the air circulating throughout your home. If your AC filter becomes clogged, the air conditioner has to work harder than it is supposed to in order to force air through the filter. A clean filter catches the airborne debris while still enabling air to flow easily through the system.
Replacement filters are sold at most major home improvement stores, hardware stores or can be ordered 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 leave for the store, noting the size of the filter. If you’re not familiar with filters, it’s also a good idea to note the filtration level of the current filter if you are wanting to buy something similar.
For detailed service of your air conditioner, contact the skilled professionals like the crew at Paniccia Heating & Cooling to do routine maintenance on your unit. They’ll look over your system, clean or lubricate parts that require attention and look for worn-out parts and potential issues.
2. How Do I Clean Air Conditioner Coils?
In addition to making certain that your indoor air conditioner equipment is functioning efficiently, it’s also a good idea to tend to your outdoor unit. Cleaning the coils on the outdoor unit of your cooling system is an easy way to boost its efficiency and can extend the life of your entire system.
The coils, which are attached to extensions called fins, are used to release heat from the refrigerant into the cooler air outside. This cools the refrigerant, which then goes back into your home so it can soak up more heat from the air in your home's interior. Cleaning 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, turn off power to the outdoor unit. It’s best to disconnect it completely from power, rather than turning the thermostat off.
2) Take off the top of the outdoor AC so you can enter the insides of the unit. Then, being careful not to stress any cords or attachments, safely move the top to the side.
3) Put a cleaning solution on the fins, starting at the top and working down. Commercial coil cleaners are sold and commonly found in both the canned aerosol spray from as well as in the form of foaming solutions that are sprayed on with your garden hose.
4) Follow directions on the product to apply. For most products, it's advised that you spray the product on, let the cleaner soak in for a small period of time to dissolve the grime and then carefully spray it off with a garden hose. Be careful not to spray too hard, because that could ruin the coils or fins!
5) Secure the top back on the unit and then wait for the components to dry before turning it back on.
3. How Long Do Air Conditioners Last?
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. Having said that, experts say you should start thinking about air conditioner replacement after about 12-15 years.
One of the best ways to get maximum value from your air conditioner is through regular conditioner maintenance. Maintenance service from Paniccia Heating & Cooling 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, contact us today to schedule air conditioning maintenance in Michigan City.
4. What Size Air Conditioner Do I Need?
Picking out the correct sized air conditioner for your home is critical for keeping comfort and efficiency. Here are some elements to think about when deciding what size air conditioner is right for your home:
- Square footage: The size of the space you have to cool is one of the key factors. Bigger spaces necessitate more cooling power.
- Home insulation: Well-insulated homes retain cool air better, which could reduce your cooling needs.
- Climate: If you are living in a hotter climate, you'll need a more powerful air conditioner compared to a homeowner living in a cooler climate.
- Number of windows: Windows can let in heat, in particular when they're south-facing or not well-insulated.
- Number of people: More people in the house create more body heat, which can impact your cooling needs.
- Existing HVAC system: The size and performance of your current system can provide a jumping off point for identifying what you need.
Given that the size of your cooling system is so important to your home’s comfort, you will probably want a professional opinion. At Paniccia Heating & Cooling, we take the time to completely understand your family’s lifestyle, comfort needs and the many other considerations such as your home’s design and size. This attention to detail and dedication to customer service is why Paniccia Heating & Cooling is known for exceptional air conditioning installation in Michigan City.
5. How Much Does an Air Conditioner Cost?
While prices differ depending on the brand of the unit and your home’s unique requirements, a new AC generally costs between $5,000 and $12,500 to purchase and install. On the plus side, a benefit of air conditioning replacement is that new air conditioners are crafted to be extremely 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 as well as federal regulations that necessitate changes to the design.
Note these are average costs and prices can differ. It's always smart to get at least a few quotes from reliable HVAC companies before making a purchase. If you’re considering air conditioning replacement in Michigan City, get in touch with Paniccia Heating & Cooling. We will provide you with a free estimate, describe the procedure and help connect you with available rebates or discounts.
6. What Causes an Air Conditioner to Freeze Up?
An air conditioner freezing up can be brought on by many factors, all of which boil down to the system's inability to efficiently transfer heat. If your air conditioner is experiencing issues causing it to freeze up, it is most likely time for air conditioning repair.
Here are some typical triggers for AC freezing up:
- Poor airflow: If the air isn't flowing easily through your AC system, it can't sufficiently absorb heat. This could be due to a clogged air filter, something stopping air from flowing through the return air ducts or a failing fan.
- Low refrigerant levels: If your air conditioner is getting low on refrigerant, it could become too cold and freeze up. This is usually a consequence of leaking in the refrigerant lines.
- Frigid outdoor temperatures: Using your air conditioner when it's too cold outside can cause the system to freeze. Most units aren't designed to operate in temperatures lower than 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius).
- Mechanical failures: Malfunctioning thermostats, damaged blower motors and trouble with the relay or control board can all result in an AC unit freezing up.
Paniccia Heating & Cooling is the Trustworthy Source for Air Conditioning Service in Michigan City.
At Paniccia Heating & Cooling, we will make your home a comfortable and soothing place. Our skilled specialists are up-to-date on the latest industry training and trends, and work on on a wide variety of systems. That’s why community members make us the premier choice for air conditioning repair in Michigan City and nearby towns.
If you’re looking to upgrade or its time for a replacement, we’ve got you covered there too, with our first-rate air conditioning installation in Michigan City. No matter what, we can help you solve your cooling issues!
Phone Paniccia Heating & Cooling today at 219-872-2198 to schedule an appointment or no-cost estimate!