I Have an Air Conditioner, So Why Is My House So Hot?
Have you ever walked into your home in the summertime to find that it’s just as hot inside as it is outside? You probably had that moment of doubt when you wondered if you’d forgotten to pay your bill. Unfortunately, it’s not always as simple as paying your energy company.
In the business of your kids getting out of school for the summer, or just wanting to enjoy time at the lake or on the patio, you can forget to schedule your yearly Air Conditioning services. If your machine isn’t keeping your house cool enough, or if it’s not cooling your home at all, there are a few things you can try before calling an HVAC technician.
Let’s look at some of the maintenance you can do, as well as times when it’s best to call a professional.
A Dirty Air Conditioner Won’t Cool Your Home
One of the simplest ways to make your air conditioner run more efficiently is to give it a thorough cleaning. A dirty unit won’t be able to pull in enough air, so it’ll have to work a lot harder and longer, which drives up your energy bill and makes it harder to cool your home.
To help your outdoor unit pull in air, you should clean the fins each spring. They’re a bit delicate, so a shop vac with a bristled brush is a great way to get a lot of dirt and debris out. You can also spray it down with your hose, but don’t use a pressure washer on it.
The fins are much too delicate to stand up to so much force. After you clean the fins, rake out the area around your unit. You need 12 – 24 inches of clear space around your outdoor component so it can draw in the air without sucking up leaves and twigs.
Inside your home, clean out the evaporator drain and refresh the air filter. If your house is still too hot after a thorough cleaning, you should schedule an appointment with an HVAC professional.
Your Refrigerant Might Be Low
Modern air conditioners cool air by blowing it over coils filled with coolant, then blowing that cooler air through your ducts and throughout your house.
The process is relatively simple, but the coolant is essential to the process. If the airflow from your vents feels powerful, but the air coming out is warm, you could have a coolant leak.
Air conditioners are closed systems, so low refrigerant is a sign that you have a leak. You could go through the entire life of your appliance and never need a recharge if you don’t develop a leak. The coolant doesn’t evaporate, so a recharge is not part of your yearly AC maintenance. However, only a professional HVAC technician can complete this repair for you.
First, your technician will locate and repair the leak. If he/she skips this step, the coolant will leak right back out and your house will be too hot again. After the technician repairs the leak, he/she will refill the refrigerant. Homeowners can’t do this themselves because you have to be EPA certified to purchase and work with refrigerants.
There Could be Mistakes in Your Installation
It’s important that you find reputable technicians and contractors to install and repair your air conditioning system. If not, you might find that your air conditioner won’t cool your home, even if it’s brand-new.
One common problem with AC installation is that the unit is the wrong size. If it’s too small, it won’t be powerful enough to cool your entire house.
Larger appliances are most costly, but if you don’t utilize their full capacity, it’s a waste of your hard-earned money. The right contractor will help you pick the correct appliance so that it’s just the right size for your home.
Call Us For All Your HVAC Needs
When it’s hot outside and in, you don’t always have the time to track down the problem yourself, so give us a call if your AC isn’t working. We can find the issue and fix it, or help you select and install the right replacement.
Best of all, we can also help you plan out some fo your maintenance needs, so you never have to worry about your system breaking down.