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WHEN SHOULD AN AIR CONDITIONER BE SERVICED?

Air conditioner needing service before the summer.The best time to have your air conditioner serviced is in late March or early April.

This is when the air starts getting warmer, and you can actually turn your AC on to see how it's functioning. The warmer temperatures make it easier to calibrate some of the equipment. Doing it at this time allows for it to be warm enough to service, but not so hot that you actually NEED to use your air conditioning system.

Pretty much every HVAC contractor recommends that you have a professional look at your air conditioning system before the summer starts.

Other companies like Energy Star and the Department of Energy both recommend the same thing.
 
No matter what kind of system you have, central air or ductless, you should make sure there is some upkeep happening every year.
 
Here in Rochester, NY, Airquip services plenty of air conditioners. Still, not everyone is going to schedule a service.
 
We hear a lot of reasons why people don’t schedule this service. Some excuses we hear most are:
  • "I like to do these things myself"
  • “I don’t have the money to pay for extra service.”
  • “It doesn’t actually make a difference”
In the end, it comes down to people not really understanding the benefits of having a professional service for their system. So, we’re going to tell you what happens in an annual air conditioning service, and why it’s important.

 
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When you have your air conditioner serviced, here are some of the benefits you can expect:

  • Improved efficiency and lower energy bills
  • Improved indoor air quality
  • Fewer breakdowns and repairs than usual
  • A longer lifespan for the unit
  • A valid warranty (in some cases)

What does the tech do during an air conditioning service?

When performing an air conditioning pre-season tune-up, there are many different checkpoints the tech goes through to make sure the system is in tip-top shape. They start by cleaning out the inner components and look for anything that may be worn out or broken. That includes the wiring. They finish by inspecting the unit for efficiency: How much energy the unit uses to produce the cooling needed to keep the space comfortable. The whole inspection process usually takes between one and two hours.
 
Of course, this is a general overview. Let’s take a more detailed look at a few of those checkpoints.

Cleaning the condenser coil.

Your condenser coil is a key component to your system. It’s responsible for collecting the heat inside your home and releasing it outside.
 
Because this part of your unit is outside your home, it’s prone to getting dirty and damaged. When that happens, the system needs to use more energy to do the job. This result in higher energy bills, as well as more wear and tear on your system.

More than that, the system just won't work as well. It may still produce some cooling, but likely not at the level you want. Especially on extremely hot days when you need your AC most. You also run the risk of your system not working at all if it goes unchecked for years.   

Inspecting the blower belt and blower motor during an AC service.Inspecting the blower belt and blower motor.

What these components do is circulate the air through your house. Your AC most likely uses a system of vents and ducts, and the only way for the air to travel through them and around your home is by pushing the air with some sort of fan or blower. As you can imagine, these components are essential for your home to be comfortable. But, just like any other motorized machine, they are subject to wear and tear. 

Inspect wiring and contacts.

This is essentially making sure your electrical connections are in good condition. Frayed wiring can be a big problem and a dangerous one at that.
 
We also may find a problem that you can't see with the naked eye when we check volt draw and amperage. Pitted contactors are a common issue. That’s when the contacts become dangerous from being exposed to excessive heat and voltage over time.
 
This kind of work can also be dangerous if you aren't properly trained. Our techs are all certified and licensed to deal with these kinds of products and components. Doing this kind of work on your own can not only be dangerous for you but also could put the system in worse shape than when you started if you aren't properly trained.

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Prevent the problem instead of fixing it.

Routine HVAC service will help get ahead of problems. Routine service can help keep parts from breaking and help your system last longer. Of course, even if you have service to your system there's still a chance something will break, but it's far less likely. Waiting until something breaks to call an HVAC company can be tough, and you could go without air conditioning while waiting for repairs. Also, it may end up costing you more than if you caught the problem early on.

Talk To Someone At Airquip About Universal Savings Agreements

An air conditioner diagnostic test.Why is regular HVAC maintenance important?

Having your system serviced regularly provides you with more than you may realize. Here are a few of the key reasons you should have your system serviced before the season starts.
  1. Improved efficiency - When you have your unit checked out and cleaned, it will run more efficiently. If you let normal wear and tear go without any sort of service, your system will slowly lose efficiency. When your system starts to lose efficiency, your energy bills go up while your system doesn't work as well as it did. No one wants to pay more for less comfort.
  2. Fewer repair costs. We touched on this when talking about the condenser and blower motor. If you have regular maintenance, you can get ahead of components that may need to be repaired or replaced. It's almost always more expensive and certainly more inconvenient to deal with a repair than regular service. You don't want to sit in a hot house this summer waiting for a technician to come to repair your system.
  3. Keep the warranty - Just about any AC you buy comes with a warranty - but that warranty usually calls for regular service. You need to have the unit regularly maintained by a certified professional. Otherwise, you may void your warranty.
  4. Better indoor air quality - Having your system serviced also means you've had your filter changed, and you’ve had your system cleaned up. Any dirt or debris that may have gotten caught in the system should be taken care of, and the air circulating throughout your home and the system will be cleaner!
If you’re still on the fence about whether or not your air conditioning system needs some routine service, here are some things to think about from previous seasons... 

Did you notice any of these problems last summer?

  • Weak airflow in different spots in the house
  • Strange sounds coming from your system
  • The AC blowing warm air instead of cold air
  • Temperatures varying greatly from room to room
Of course, you should always schedule regular maintenance for your system. But if you haven’t in the past, and these symptoms sound familiar to you, this is definitely an indication that you could use some professional help!
 
Don’t wait till summer’s here!

Contact Us Today To Schedule Your AC Maintenance
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