Maintenance

How to Maintain an Air Conditioning System

During the hot summer season, we all depend on our air conditioners to provide much-needed comfort. However, if you want your HVAC unit to function optimally, you must ensure it is properly maintained and in tip-top condition. A properly maintained air conditioner will not only save you money, enhance the quality of air in your indoor environment, but will equally keep your home and family safe at all times. A well-maintained system runs more efficiently, implying that you’ll use less amount of energy to run it, and this will certainly keep your monthly energy bills as low as possible. What’s more, a well-maintained air conditioner will serve you for an extended period with very minimal repairs in between.

How can you maintain your air conditioning system?

It is imperative to note that when your unit requires more than routine maintenance, hire a licensed and experienced technician. Skilled, well-trained HVAC technicians boast the expertise to identify and fix all the potential problems with your air conditioner unit. Below are proven, expert tips on how to maintain your unit and ensure it operates in peak condition.

Clean and replace dirty and clogged coils and filters:

Your air conditioner condenser, as well as evaporator coils, are known to collect lots of dirt over their continued years of service. Usually, a clean filter ensures the evaporator coil doesn’t accumulate dirt quickly. However, with time, your equipment’s evaporator coil will still collect some dirt. The dirt will not only reduce the free air circulation, insulate the evaporator coil, but will equally reduce its heat absorption potential. Clogged filters and dirty coils usually force your unit to strain and consume lots of energy to cool your home and this will directly translate to your monthly bills.

To ensure your air conditioning system doesn’t experience this type of problem, always contact your local technician to clean your unit’s evaporator coil more regularly.

Take care of your outdoor condenser:

If you weren’t aware, the outdoor condenser coils will also accumulate lots of dirt especially if the outside surroundings are dusty or filled with leaves and other debris. You should ensure that this essential component is free from all sorts of dirt and debris. To ensure sufficient air circulation around the outdoor condenser, take the initiative to remove any fallen leaves and dirt around this unit. Also, ensure that the trees nearby are well-trimmed such that they don’t hinder adequate airflow around the unit.

Contact an air conditioner service provider to examine components and wiring:

This is a complex and potentially dangerous task and should only be handled by professionals. Proper maintenance should involve checking all the electrical connections within the air conditioner unit to ensure they are properly connected and effectively secured. He should look for signs of overheating and burned wiring. The technician should also closely examine the contactor switch and may replace it if there are signs of excessive pitting.

Always keep an eye on your thermostat:

This is arguably the most important component of your unit simply because it regulates your home temperature to keep you comfortable. You should have professional inspecting this essential component to ensure it is working as expected to keep your house at the right temperature. If you are currently using the conventional, manual type of thermostat, you should seriously consider upgrading to a programmable model. A programmable thermostat not only guarantees high levels of comfort but convenience as well. It will automatically set the right temperature requirements of your home accordingly. It only means that you can save lots of energy and money by not having your unit operating constantly even when you aren’t available.

Regularly lubricate the fan motor bearings:

While this is a relatively easier maintenance task, you are highly advised to have it executed by a professional. The condenser fan does a great job of cooling your outdoor unit. You just ensure that it is in good condition and occasionally replace the blades if they show visible signs of cracks or chipping.

Take note of your unit’s drain line:

If you didn’t know, clogged drain channels can potentially prevent a heating and cooling system from tackling the humidity problem, allowing excess moisture buildup in your home and this can be dangerous. Always ensure that your unit’s drain channels are not clogged.

Air conditioner

Split System vs Evaporative Air Conditioning: What’s the Difference

If you’re in the market for a new air conditioner or trying to switch, you might come face-to-face with the options of a split system and an evaporative cooling system. There are several differences, including the method of air condition maintenance required, the cost of the air conditioner installation, and the overall functions and benefits each type of system offers. To help you understand the differences, we’ll go through the most primary factors.

The Way They Work

While both systems possess indoor and outdoor units, they cool the air down in different ways.

A split system uses refrigerant to cool hot air from the outside, which it brings inside and subsequently recirculates throughout the space. They can be targeted towards specific rooms and work well in every climate because they’re made especially for enclosed areas. They also work with filters that trap bacteria and allergens better than an evaporative cooling system would.

An evaporative cooling system similarly takes hot air from the outside, but instead of cooling the air down with coolant, it runs the air across wet cooling pads and gives the inside environment said air. The installation needs to be in an open space to work, such as an open window, door, or rooftop entry space, but this ensures that the air it brings in is always fresh since it doesn’t recycle air like in a split system.

The Cost

When looking at air conditioner installation, a split system is about twice as much to install as an evaporative cooling system. The latter is also considered more energy-efficient and will likely lead to a lower power bill.

Whether or not you’re willing to go with air conditioner installation for the more expensive option depends on how satisfied you are with the air conditioner service provided by the split system. An expert air conditioner service can help you figure out which system is better for your budget.

The Moisture Factor

As mentioned previously, split systems work best in all types of environments because they recirculate inside air. Although this is very effective for heating and cooling, and although the filters do trap in most harmful particles, the air can get dry and irritate those with allergies or sensitive skin and eyes.

An evaporative cooling system adds moisture to the air due to the method of its cooling. Because of this, however, evaporative cooling systems don’t work well in humid environments and can make the inside environment too moist.

Maintenance

Air conditioner maintenance concerning an evaporative cooling system is relatively easy. This type of system only requires seasonal maintenance, whereas a split system needs to have its filters cleaned regularly. Evaporative cooling systems can, however, give homeowner problems with water leakage, in which case you’d need to call someone in for air conditioner repair.

Air conditioner repair for both of them should be done by a professional air conditioner service, though minor problems can be checked on by yourself, of course. Proper air conditioner maintenance should be a priority, no matter which option you’re working with. Yearly check-ins on your AC unit should be done by experts who can tell you whether or not you need air conditioner repair before it might be too late to catch any problems before they worsen.

In summary, split systems are more expensive and recycle air, but work in any climate and trap dust, dirt, and allergens in filters. Evaporative cooling systems don’t work in humid environments and can add too much moisture to the air, but they’re a cheaper option and provide fresh air to an inside environment.

Air Conditioning Bills

Home Improvement Tips to Reduce Your Air Conditioning Bills

We all like to save as much money as we can, and looking to cut down on the power bill is no exception. The AC can be one of the main, if not the main factor in fluctuating the monthly price of your utilities. Just for you, we’ve got some helpful tips, both big and small, to effectively cut down on your air conditioning bill, allow you to perform simple air conditioner maintenance, and save you some money.

25°C : The Golden Number

The gist of how hard your air conditioner works is mainly due to how hot the environment is. The hotter the inside of the house, the more your AC works to get it down to the right temperature. The ideal temperature to set your thermostat to is 25°C. If you don’t have a thermostat, consider finding an air conditioner service to help you install one.

Your thermostat will automatically keep the air at this temperature, but you can adjust to a cooler temperature or turn it off entirely if you feel the need.

Give Your House Shade

For the outside of your house, consider planting trees for shade or tall shrubs. For the inside of your home, invest in a good set of blinds, proper curtains, mesh screens, or a tinted film to place on your windows and keep the interior of your house cooled down.

Replace Your Lightbulbs

Most homes use incandescent lightbulbs because they’re the cheapest option. They give off a lot of heat, however, so switching to CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) lightbulbs would not only heat your house less but save energy and last a much longer time than incandescent bulbs.

Also, remember to turn off the lights in rooms that you aren’t using or use natural light from the windows instead.

Regularly Replace Your Air Filter

People sometimes forget about changing the filter, but your air conditioner won’t circulate air properly if the filter is dirty or caked with dust. You only need to about once every few months, though monthly is a good idea if you have pets and children with or without allergies.

Make Use of the Ceiling Fan

Using your ceiling fan instead of your air conditioner can give your AC the rest it needs, especially if you’re the only one in the house and using just one room.

Produce Less Heat

Everything electronic – computers, stovetops, televisions, computers – will give off heat. Cut down your electronic usage time during the hottest parts of the day – or in general – and consider cooking outdoors if at all possible. At the very least, cook inside while the AC is off and open a door instead.

Fix Up the Windows

Sometimes the caulking on your windows can wear down and cause all the cold air to leak out, making your AC work far harder than it needs to. This issue might be so minor that you might not even realize it, so take the time to do a proper inspection of your windows and seal them back up if you need to.

Have a Professional Do Yearly Check-Ups

Look into a professional air conditioner service to come around at least once a year and check up on your air conditioner maintenance. A professional will check the levels of refrigerant, inspect for leaks, check that the unit connects correctly to your house, and most likely perform some air conditioner maintenance of their own like cleaning the fans and coils. If you need air conditioner repair, a professional will be able to tell you during that yearly check-in.

Replace Your Entire AC Unit

Sometimes you keep spending money on air conditioner repair when the issue turns out to be that your air conditioner is plain old. To cut down on the amount of air conditioner service and repairs you’ll need in the future, consider investing in a new model. Chances are it’ll circulate air much better and prove to be a lot more energy efficient than whatever you’re working with at the moment.

Air conditioner maintenance is a lot more critical than you might realize. Keeping your AC clean and your house cool is the secret to a lower power bill, so make sure you’re treating your air conditioner right.

Air Conditioner Service

What to Do When Your Air Conditioner Drain Line is Clogged

Your air conditioner has a drain line. Also referred to as a condensate drain line, the drain line is usually connected to the drain pan found beneath the air handler. Drain line-related problems can potentially have a detrimental impact on the functionality of your unit. The problem usually starts with leakage and can quickly progress to water damage, mould growth and many more. Common signs of a clogged condensate drain line include:

  • Mould growth: The presence of mould growth around the air conditioner unit or in the drip pan indicates a clogged drain line.
  • Water damage: If there are visible signs of dampness around your unit’s fan or generally around the air conditioner, just know that there could be a leak and a clogged drain line is to blame.
  • Dripping water: If there is standing or dripping water around your air conditioner, this could be a tell-tale sign that your drain pipe is blocked.
  • Filled drip pan: If you aren’t seeing any dripping water, your drip pan is certainly full and this implies that water isn’t draining as expected and this can only be attributed to a clog in the drain line.

All the moisture accumulated inside your air conditioner as a result of condensation usually gets stored in the drain pan. The primary function of the condensate drain line is to channel out this collected water to allow your AC unit to operate optimally. There are numerous reasons behind the clogging of air conditioner drain lines. However, the major culprits include; mould growth inside the drain line, corrosion which results in the build-up of particles inside the drain line, insect or rodent infestation in your drain line. Also, dander, dust, dirt, and debris can find their way into your drain line. With time, they can collect together to form large particles large enough to cause a drain line blockage.

Can you unblock a clogged drain line?

The prospect of unblocking a clogged drain line is not only a daunting and intimidating task but one characterized by lots of complexity. This is why you would want to hire a professional technician to help you out. This implies that your first line of defence should be to contact an air conditioner service provider to help you handle the situation.

However, if you are a DIY daredevil, there are steps to follow to unblock the condensate drain line. So, in this section, let us give you a few tips on how to unclog your AC drain pipe. It is imperative to note that this procedure is only recommended for smaller drain clogs.

  • Turn off the power to the air conditioner: Just like any other electrical repair job, the first step is always to turn off the electrical power connection. In this case, you should turn off the power at the breaker and your thermostat.
  • Locate and access the drain line: It is usually located outdoors, closer to the condenser unit. Next, you will need to find the point of access to your drain line. Check out for a T-shaped spot featuring a cap that covers the drain’s top. Remove the cap and examine if there is a blockage.
  • Put on your gloves and remove any visible object that seems to block the drainpipe. However, if the clog seems to be too far, proceed to the next step.
  • Try clearing the drain line using positive air pressure or suction pipe: Try to vacuum the pipe from both ends and see if the problem gets solved. Alternatively, you may use an air compressor to blast some air into the pipe to help blow out the clog. And once the condensate pipe is clean and clear, pour some white vinegar through it to help kill all the remaining algae and mould to prevent any future clogging incidences.

As we previously mentioned, this type of air conditioner repair project is best left to the professionals. Air conditioner repair experts not only boast the technical know-how needed to handle the job effectively but have the right tools and equipment. What’s more, they will provide you with effective air conditioner maintenance tips to ensure your unit doesn’t suffer any future clogging issues.

Air Conditioning Service

Benefits of Regular Air Conditioning Service

We would all love to reside in a comfortable and safe environment. If you live in regions where the summers are unbearably hot, then you probably understand the unrivalled amount of comfort and safety offered by air conditioning units. Since their inception, air conditioners have become arguably the most dependable home electrical devices thanks to the vast array of benefits they guarantee to homeowners.

Air conditioners not only cool your home’s interior to create a highly comfortable environment but equally enhances the quality of air inside your home. What’s more, modern air conditioning units boast disposable or washable filter media that effectively prevent pollutants and allergens from circulating in your entire interior spaces.

However, for homeowners to enjoy any of the above benefits, a proper and routine air conditioner is a must. A properly serviced and well-maintained air conditioner will not only function optimally but will also use relatively less amount of energy hence saving you lots of money in the long run.

So, what are the benefits of regular air conditioning service?

Extended Years of Service

Heating and cooling systems are amongst the most expensive home appliances. This is why you want to make the most out of yours by making sure it lasts fairly long. On average, an air conditioner should serve you for between ten to fifteen years. However, with regular air conditioner maintenance, you can extend the life of your unit by at least five more years.

Enhanced Safe Equipment Operation

A poorly maintained air conditioner can not only result in costly repairs but can also endanger the safety of your home. For instance, an electric-powered air conditioner can sometimes develop a short circuit, which can be a potentially dangerous fire hazard if not detected quite earlier. Also, your furnace could develop a crack in its heat exchanger, and this may cause the dangerous carbon monoxide gas to be released inside your home. With proper air conditioner maintenance, all these problems can be identified and addressed before they become life-threatening. Simply put, your family’s safety is another great reason to schedule regular air conditioner servicing.

Reduced Energy bills

When your air conditioner isn’t in great shape, it will likely strain to raise the desired level of comfort in your home. This only implies that the unit will likely use more energy leading to increased monthly energy bills. On the other hand, a properly maintained system uses less amount of energy, keeping your monthly utility bills as low as possible.

Fewer Repair Incidences

Regular air conditioner tune-up will help identify and diagnose any potential problems before they actually become disastrous. Repairing or replacing damaged and faulty parts will surely cost less than replacing the whole air conditioning unit as a result of a major breakdown or damage. During the sweltering heat in the summer, the last thing you would want is having a malfunctioning AC unit. Routine air conditioner service will greatly reduce the likelihood of an unplanned emergency repair.

Improved Air Quality

Apart from cooling your home and making it more comfortable, an air conditioner is supposed to provide your home with clean and fresh air. Unfortunately, a poorly maintained unit won’t achieve these requirements. Clogged and dirty filters will always prevent free air circulation and this will not only cause the unit to consume lots of energy but may also result in breathing and allergy problems. What’s more, a dirty air conditioner will likely fill your home with an unpleasant odour.

These are some of the most compelling reasons why you should seriously consider having your cooling and heating unit serviced regularly. HVAC experts recommend that you should have it serviced at least twice a year. Look for a qualified, licensed and experienced technician to carry out the maintenance task.