They say knowledge is power, and that’s undoubtedly the truth when talking about your air conditioner. While complex repairs are best left to specialists, it’s helpful to have a basic understanding of your air conditioner and how to solve general AC issues.
Knowing how your AC works and the frequent problems it faces will allow you to tackle simple problems without needing to call an HVAC specialist every time. This not only saves you money on minor service calls, but realizing when to reach out to a professional can help prevent small issues from escalating into major repairs.
Your AC is an important 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 Bishop if you're not sure about any aspect of your air conditioning system’s operation or maintenance.
Here are a few of the typical questions people ask our experts about their air conditioners:
1. How Do I Clean an Air Conditioner?
Cleaning an air conditioner is a good way to make sure it works efficiently, and potentially could extend the life of your unit.
The most significant thing you can do on your own is to swap out the air filter in your air conditioner. The filter catches dust, pollen, pet hair and other debris, and removes those impurities from the air circulating inside your home. If your AC filter becomes plugged, the air conditioner has to work harder than it ought to in order to force air through the filter. A clean filter traps the airborne debris while still enabling air to flow easily through the system.
Replacement filters are available at most leading home improvement stores, hardware stores or can be bought from your local HVAC professional. A good way to make sure you get the right filter is to look at your old one before you leave for the store, taking care to write down 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 wanting to buy something similar.
For comprehensive service of your air conditioner, contact the experienced professionals like the crew at Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning to do scheduled maintenance on your unit. They’ll look over your system, clean or lubricate parts that require attention and look for worn-out parts and potential issues.
2. How Do I Clean Air Conditioner Coils?
In addition to making sure your indoor air conditioning unit is functioning efficiently, it’s also a good idea to tend to your outdoor unit. Cleaning the coils on the outdoor unit of your air conditioner is an easy way to increase its efficiency and can extend the life of your entire system.
The coils, which have extensions called fins, are used to release heat from the refrigerant to the outdoors. This lowers the temperature of the refrigerant, which then goes back in your home so it can absorb more heat from the air within your home. Cleaning the fins and the coils can help them release heat more effectively.
To clean your air conditioner’s fins and coil:
1) First, turn off power to the outdoor unit. It’s best to disconnect it completely from power, rather than turning the thermostat off.
2) Lift off the top of the outdoor AC so you can access the inside of the unit. Then, being careful not to stress any cords or attachments, safely move the top to the side.
3) Apply a cleaning solution on the fins, starting at the top and then working your way down. Commercial coil cleaners are available and commonly found in both the canned aerosol spray from as well as products foaming solutions that are sprayed on with an attachment to your garden hose.
4) Follow directions on the product to apply. For most cleaners, it's recommended that you spray the product on, let the cleaner soak in for a short period of time to loosen the grime and then softly spray it off with a garden hose. Be careful not to spray too hard, because that could damage the coils or fins!
5) Secure the top back on the unit and then wait for the coils and fins to dry before turning it back on.
3. How Long Do Air Conditioners Last?
The life span of an air conditioner changes depending on the type of unit, its quality, if maintained and how much it's used. That said, experts say you should start getting ready for air conditioner replacement after about 12-15 years.
One of the best ways to get the most mileage out of your system is through regular conditioner maintenance. Routine checkups from Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning includes cleaning and inspecting the machinery, as well as replacing the 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 Bishop.
4. What Size Air Conditioner Do I Need?
Finding the correct sized air conditioner for your home is crucial for achieving comfort and efficiency. Here are some elements to take into account when deciding what size air conditioner is right for your home:
- Square footage: The size of the space you have to cool is one of the biggest factors. Bigger spaces require more cooling power.
- Home insulation: Well-insulated homes hold cool air better, which could reduce your cooling needs.
- Climate: If you are living 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, especially when they're south-facing or not well-insulated.
- Number of people: More people in the house means more body heat, which could impact your cooling needs.
- Current HVAC system: The size and capability of your current system can provide a starting point for deciding what you need.
Due to the fact the size of your AC is so essential to your home’s comfort, you will almost certainly want a professional opinion. At Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning, we take the time to fully understand your family’s lifestyle, comfort needs and the many other variables such as your home’s insulation level and size. This attention to detail and commitment to customer service is why Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning is known for excellent air conditioning installation in Bishop.
5. How Much Does an Air Conditioner Cost?
While prices fluctuate depending on the size of the unit and your home’s unique specifications, a new air conditioning system 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 price 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 in addition to federal regulations that can impact the design.
Note these are average costs and prices can differ. It's always a good idea to get at least a few quotes from trustworthy HVAC companies before making a decision. If you’re considering air conditioning replacement in Bishop, contact Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning. We will provide you with a free estimate, describe the plan and help connect you with available rebates or discounts.
6. What Causes an Air Conditioner to Freeze Up?
Air conditioning freezing up can be a consequence of a variety of factors, all of which boil down to the AC's inability to efficiently transfer heat. If your air conditioner is having issues causing it to freeze up, it is more than likely time for air conditioning repair.
Here are some typical causes of AC freezing up:
- Inadequate airflow: If the air isn't flowing correctly through your AC system, it can't effectively absorb heat. This could be due to a plugged 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 can become too cold and freeze up. This is usually a consequence of leaks in the refrigerant lines.
- Cold outdoor temperatures: Using your air conditioner when it's too cold outside can cause the system to freeze. Many units aren't designed to perform in temperatures below 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius).
- Mechanical failures: Faulty thermostats, damaged blower motors and issues with the relay or control board can all result in an AC unit freezing up.
Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning is the Trustworthy Source for Air Conditioning Service in Bishop.
At Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning, we are focusing on making your home a comfortable and enjoyable place. Our experienced specialists are up-to-date on the latest industry training and trends, and are knowledgeable on a wide variety of systems. That’s why community members make us their first call for air conditioning repair in Bishop and neighboring areas.
If you’re planning to upgrade or its time for a new unit, we’ve got you covered there too, with our first-rate air conditioning installation in Bishop. No matter what, we can help you solve your cooling issues!
Call Bishop Heating & Air Conditioning today at 760-784-9034 to schedule an appointment or free estimate!