They say knowledge is power, and that’s undoubtedly accurate when talking about your air conditioner. While challenging 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.
Understanding how your AC works and the typical problems it faces will allow you to handle easy problems without needing to call an HVAC specialist every time. This not only saves you dollars on minor service calls, but realizing when to call a professional can help prevent small issues from escalating into major repairs.
Your Air conditioner is an important part of your home comfort. Because of that, you should always err on the side of caution and call a NATE-certified technician for air conditioning repair in Michigan City if you're unsure about any aspect of your AC's operation or maintenance.
Here are a few of the common questions people ask our experts about their air conditioners:
1. How Should I Clean My Air Conditioner?
Cleaning an air conditioning system is a good way to make sure it operates efficiently, and possibly could extend the life of your unit.
The most significant thing you can do on your own is to change the air filter in your air conditioner. The filter captures dust, pollen, pet hair and other debris, and removes those particulates from the air circulating inside your home. If your AC filter becomes plugged, the air conditioner has to work harder than it really should in order to move air through the filter. A clean filter removes the airborne debris while still enabling air to flow freely through the system.
Replacement filters are available at most popular home improvement stores, hardware stores or can be ordered from your local HVAC professional. A good way to make sure you get the proper filter is to look at your old one before you go shopping, noting the size of the filter. If you’re not familiar with filters, it’s also helpful 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 seasoned professionals like the crew at Paniccia Heating & Cooling to do routine maintenance on your unit. They’ll examine your system, clean or lubricate parts that need cleaning and look for worn-out parts and potential problems.
2. How Should I Clean the Air Conditioner Coils?
In addition to making certain that 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 an easy way to increase 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 to the outdoors. This cools the refrigerant, which then goes back in your home so it can take in more heat from the air within your home. Cleaning the fins and the coils is a way to help them release heat more easily.
To clean your air conditioner’s fins and coil:
1) First, turn off power to the outdoor unit. It’s best to flip the power switch off, rather than turning the thermostat off.
2) Take off the top of the outdoor AC so you can access the inside of the unit. Then, being cautious not to strain any cords or attachments, safely move the top to the side.
3) Apply a cleaning solution on the fins, first at the top and then working your way down. Commercial coil cleaners are on the market 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 small period of time to attack the grime and then softly spray it off with a garden hose. Take care not to spray really hard, because that could harm the coils or fins!
5) Secure the top back on the unit and then wait for the unit to dry before turning the power back on.
3. What Is the Average Lifespan of My Air Conditioner?
The life span of an air conditioner changes depending on the type of unit, its quality, how well it's maintained and how frequently it's used. However, experts say you should start thinking about air conditioner replacement after about 12-15 years.
One of the best ways to make the most of your system is through AC conditioner maintenance. Tuneups from Paniccia Heating & Cooling consists of cleaning and inspecting the machinery, as well as changing out the dirty filter and repairing any worn-out or broken parts. To keep your unit operating a long time, contact us today to schedule air conditioning maintenance in Michigan City.
4. What's the Right Size of Air Conditioner?
Finding the correct sized air conditioner for your home is critical for maintaining comfort and efficiency. Here are some points to take into account when deciding what size air conditioner to buy for your home:
- Square footage: The amount of space you need to cool is one of the biggest factors. Bigger spaces necessitate more cooling power.
- Home insulation: Well-insulated homes preserve cool air better, which could minimize your cooling needs.
- Climate: If you live in a hotter climate, you'll require a more powerful air conditioner compared to someone living in a cooler place.
- Number of windows: Windows often let in heat, especially when they're south-facing or not well-insulated.
- Number of residents: More people in the house means additional body heat, which can affect your cooling needs.
- Existing HVAC system: The size and capability of your current system can provide a place to start for determining what you need.
Due to the fact the size of your air conditioner 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 factors such as your home’s layout and size. This attention to detail and commitment to customer service is why Paniccia Heating & Cooling is known for excellent air conditioning installation in Michigan City.
5. What Does My Air Conditioner Cost?
While prices differ depending on the size of the unit and your home’s unique needs, a new AC generally costs between $5,000 and $12,500 to purchase and install. The good thing is that new air conditioners are crafted to be exceptionally efficient, so they do more with less power when compared to older units.
The cost of an air conditioner is impacted 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 can impact the design.
Note these are average costs and prices can differ. It's always a good idea to get several quotes from reliable HVAC companies before making a choice. If you’re thinking about air conditioning replacement in Michigan City, contact Paniccia Heating & Cooling. We can provide you with a complimentary estimate, make sure you understand 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 having issues causing it to freeze up, it is very likely time for air conditioning repair.
Here are some frequent triggers for AC freezing up:
- Inadequate airflow: If the air isn't flowing easily through your AC system, it can't effectively absorb heat. This could be due to a clogged air filter, obstructed return air ducts or a failing fan.
- Low refrigerant levels: If your air conditioner is starting to get low on refrigerant, it could grow too cold and freeze up. This is usually because of leaks in the refrigerant lines.
- Very Chilly outdoor temperatures: Running your air conditioner when it's very 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 problems with the relay or control board can all play a role 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 are focusing on making your home a comfortable and enjoyable place. Our skilled technicians are up-to-date on the latest industry training and trends, and are experienced on a wide variety of systems. That’s why community members make us the first choice for air conditioning repair in Michigan City and neighboring cities.
If you’re seeking to upgrade or its time for a new unit, we’ve got you covered there too, with our top-notch 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 complimentary estimate!