They say knowledge is power, and that’s certainly true when discussing your air conditioner. While challenging repairs are best left to professionals, it’s helpful to have a rudimentary understanding of your air conditioner and how to solve general AC issues.
Understanding how your AC works and the common problems it faces can empower you to handle little problems without needing to call an HVAC specialist every time. This not only saves you money on minor service calls, but understanding when to contact a professional can help prevent small issues from escalating into major repairs.
Your AC is a fundamental component of your home comfort. Because of that, you should always err on the side of caution and call a NATE-certified specialist for air conditioning repair in Odessa if you're not sure about any aspect of your air conditioner's operation or maintenance.
Here are several frequent questions people ask our experts about their air conditioners:
1. How Do I Clean an Air Conditioner?
Cleaning an air conditioner is an effective way to make sure it runs efficiently, and possibly could extend the life of your unit.
The most important thing you can do 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 choked with debris, the air conditioner has to work harder than it really should in order to move air through the filter. A clean filter catches the airborne debris while still allowing air to flow freely through the system.
Replacement filters are sold at most major home improvement stores, hardware stores or can be bought from your local HVAC expert. A good way to make sure you get the correct 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 a good idea to note the filtration level of the current filter if you are trying to buy something similar.
For thorough service of your air conditioner, contact the skilled professionals like the crew at Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning to do scheduled maintenance on your AC. They’ll inspect your system, clean or lubricate parts that require attention and look for worn-out parts and potential issues.
2. How Are the Coils on My Air Conditioner Cleaned?
In addition to ensuring your indoor air conditioner equipment is working efficiently, it’s important to tend to your outdoor unit. Cleaning the coils on the outdoor unit of your cooling system is a simple way to increase its efficiency and can extend the life of your entire system.
The coils, which include 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. Cleansing the fins and the coils will help them release heat more efficiently.
To clean your air conditioner’s fins and coil:
1) First, shut down power to the outdoor unit. It’s best to flip off the the on/off switch, instead of turning the thermostat off.
2) Lift off the top of the outdoor AC so you can enter the interior of the unit. Then, being cautious 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 moving down. Commercial coil cleaners are available and commonly found in both the canned aerosol spray from as well as brands foaming solutions that are applied with your garden hose.
4) Follow directions on the product to apply. For most cleaners, it's suggested that you spray the product on, let the cleaner soak in for a brief period of time to attack the grime and then softly spray it off with a garden hose. Be careful not to spray very hard, because that could damage the coils or fins!
5) Secure the top back on the unit and then wait for the components to dry before turning the power back on.
3. How Long Can Air Conditioners Work?
The life span of an air conditioner changes depending on the type of unit, its quality, if maintained and how often it's used. However, experts say you should start looking into air conditioner replacement after about 12-15 years.
One of the best ways to make the most of your air conditioner is through regularly scheduled conditioner maintenance. Tuneups from Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning features 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 as long as it can, call us today to schedule air conditioning maintenance in Odessa.
4. What's the Right Size of Air Conditioner?
Finding the right size of air conditioner for your home is crucial for keeping comfort and efficiency. Here are some elements to take into account when deciding what size air conditioner to buy for your home:
- Square footage: The total area of the space you want to cool is one of the biggest factors. Bigger spaces necessitate more cooling power.
- Home insulation: Well-insulated homes hold cool air better, which can decrease your cooling needs.
- Climate: If you live in a hotter climate, you'll need a more powerful air conditioner compared to someone living in a cooler environment.
- Number of windows: Windows often let in heat, particularly when they're south-facing or not well-insulated.
- Number of residents: More people in the house create additional body heat, which can affect your cooling needs.
- Present HVAC system: The size and capability of your current system can provide a starting point for deciding what you need.
Given that the size of your air conditioner is so important to your home’s comfort, you will probably want a professional opinion. At Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning, 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 Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning is known for superb air conditioning installation in Odessa.
5. What Does My Air Conditioner Cost?
While prices fluctuate 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. The good news is that new air conditioners are developed to be exceptionally efficient, so they do more with less power when compared to older units.
The cost of an air conditioner is influenced by several factors during the manufacturing process, such as the cost and availability of raw materials, manufacturing and labor costs along with federal regulations that can impact the design.
Note these are average costs and prices can vary. It's always helpful to get at least a few quotes from reliable HVAC companies before making a choice. If you’re thinking about air conditioning replacement in Odessa, get in touch with Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning. We can provide you with a no-cost estimate, make sure you understand the plan and help connect you with available rebates or discounts.
6. Why Is My Air Conditioner Freezing Up?
An AC freezing up can be a consequence of multiple factors, all of which boil down to the AC's inability to efficiently transfer heat. If your AC is experiencing issues causing it to freeze up, it is very likely time for air conditioning repair.
Here are some frequent reasons 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 plugged 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 frequently a consequence of leaking in the refrigerant lines.
- Frigid outdoor temperatures: Operating the air conditioner when it's really cold outside can cause the system to freeze. Many units aren't designed to operate in temperatures lower than 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius).
- Mechanical failures: Malfunctioning thermostats, damaged blower motors and issues with the relay or control board can all contribute to an AC unit freezing up.
Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning is your Trustworthy Source for Air Conditioning Service in Odessa.
At Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning, we strive to make your home a comfortable and soothing place. Our skilled specialists 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 their first call for air conditioning repair in Odessa and neighboring areas.
If you’re wanting to upgrade or its time for a new unit, we’ve got you covered there too, with our first-rate air conditioning installation in Odessa. No matter what, we can help you solve your cooling issues!
Contact Redhawk Heating & Air Conditioning today at 432-237-0168 to schedule an appointment or free estimate!