How Routine Air Conditioning Service Can Reduce AC Repair Costs

Air conditioning is important for countless homes during the blistering summer months in Buffalo. However, the operating costs associated with running an AC are substantial. Know how routine air conditioning service can decrease AC repair costs, and learn energy-saving habits to help your unit run more efficiently. With these tips, you’ll enjoy a comfortable home this summer without draining your bank account.

What Routine AC Service Involves

Air conditioning maintenance is an inexpensive, predictable annual expense that pays you back by reducing repair costs and lengthening your unit’s life span. Here are some significant maintenance steps that help prevent air conditioner breakdowns:

  • Replace the air filter: A dirty filter obstructs airflow and makes your air conditioner to work harder, burning more energy and increasing the risk of overheating. Replacing your air conditioner’s dirty air filter with a clean one as part of your annual maintenance service call, and every 30 to 90 days throughout the year, encourages ideal airflow and efficiency.
  • Clean the evaporator coil: The in-house evaporator coil can become covered in dirt and dust as time goes by, reducing its ability to absorb heat. This can cause the refrigerant inside of the coil to freeze, preventing your air conditioner from running effectively. Cleaning the coil removes this insulating layer and helps the refrigerant to operate effectively.
  • Clean the condenser coil: The outdoor condenser coil releases heat absorbed by the refrigerant. If it’s blocked by cobwebs, grass clippings and other debris, the heat transfer process is weakened. Cleaning the condenser coil boosts the unit’s performance substantially, reducing wear and tear on your air conditioner that could cause breakdowns.
  • Straighten the coils’ fins: The aluminum fins on the evaporator and condenser coils can become bent, cutting down on the airflow and reducing performance.  Fixing the fins with a fin comb puts them to their original position to reestablish ideal airflow.
  • Lubricate moving parts: Friction in the motor and other moving hardware produces heat and causes excessive wear and tear.  Regular lubrication reduces friction, ensuring smooth operation and decreasing the need for repairs.
  • Check refrigerant levels: A low refrigerant charge is another explanation for why your AC can freeze up, causing longer run times, comfort problems and preventable AC repairs. A skilled Expert uses specific tools to check and modify refrigerant levels as needed to ensure proper function and prevent a mid-season breakdown.

Other Ways to Reduce AC Repair Costs

Once-a-year maintenance is a crucial factor in reducing AC repair charges, but here are some other tips to help your air conditioning unit operate reliably all summer long:

  • Turn the temperature up: Elevating the thermostat setting reduces the wear and tear on your cooling system.  Find a comfortable temperature and avoid lowering the temperature.
  • Use a programmable thermostat: When set correctly, a programmable thermostat helps regulate your home’s temperature in a more efficient manner, reducing the stress on your AC unit. An effective technique is to schedule setback periods of 7 to 10 degrees while you’re away or sleeping to help save on energy costs and further diminish wear and tear.
  • Seal air leaks: Gaps and cracks around the edges of windows and doors let warm, humid air indoors. Apply caulk and weatherstripping to avoid overworking your air conditioning unit.
  • Put in additional insulation: an appropriate attic insulation level encourages reliable indoor temperatures and reduces your AC’s workload. If you can see the attic floor or joists poking through the existing insulation, add more.
  • Stop solar heat gain: The sun’s heat warms your home, increasing cooling demand. Installing window coverings and closing the blinds or shades during the hottest times of the day blocks solar heat gain and lowers the chance of a mid-season breakdown.
  • Run ceiling fans: The wind chill effect produced by ceiling fans makes the room feel about 4 degrees cooler, which allows you to raise the thermostat setting without losing comfort. It’s a good idea to switch the fan off when you leave the room, as fans cool people, not spaces.
  • Use a dehumidifier: For those who reside in a humid part of North America, elevated humidity levels can easily make your home feel cool but clammy, motivating you to lower the temperature on your thermostat. A whole-house dehumidifier takes out excess moisture, giving your AC a much-needed break.
  • Clear out your vents: Closed or sealed off air vents throw off the balance of return and supply air, which might cause your AC to break down. To avoid this, leave at least 80 percent of your registers open, and make sure no furniture, curtains or rugs unintentionally obstruct airflow. Enhance circulation further by making sure doors between rooms are open as much as possible.
  • Invest in an energy-efficient air conditioner: If your air conditioner is more than 10 years old, think about upgrading to a more energy-efficient system. In addition to improved efficiency, a new system is also less likely to break down or encounter maintenance issues than an older unit, reducing your repair fees in the long run.

Schedule AC Service in Buffalo

By investing in scheduled air conditioning maintenance and adopting other recommended home-cooling habits, you’ll enjoy a comfortable interior with lower repair costs this summer. Sunbeam Service Experts offers quality air conditioner tune-ups to maximize efficiency and extend your air conditioner’s life span. We can also upgrade your AC unit if yours is past its prime.

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