Technician is checking air conditioner
Technician is checking air conditioner

How Long Should You Expect Your Air Conditioner to Last?

Thinking how long it will take before your current A/C unit fall apart and calls for a costly replacement?

Most customers presume that companies are out to get their money when they advise on the need for replacement of their air conditioners. We understand that an A/C unit is an expense, but how can you tell when it’s time to replace your air conditioner?

The hot summers in Florida cause the A/C units to overwork to keep you fresh during these hot days, thus resulting in hectic air conditioning repairs bills. However, here is a list of signs you can tell in case that you need to either replace or seek air conditioning services for you’re A/C unit. We also provide tips on how you can take to ensure that your system lasts for many years.

  1. Age

The rule of thumb when it comes to the shelf life of an A/C unit is that after 10-15 years, it is high time to replace the unit. A/C replacement is a wise investment strategy instead of relying on air conditioning repairs on the old system. After this specified period, it is highly likely to expect the system from breaking down.

However, with proper maintenance of the system, it can extend its life while giving you top service. In case you cannot recall the system’s age, you can write down the model and serial number from the manufacturer and inquire about the details. For our customers, we have an excellent compilation of all the records which you can acquire information about your system from our staff.

  1. Increase in Electric Costs

With years of operation, the coil within the system is bound to reduce its efficiency. The reduction is due to the decrease in the SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) of old systems. With the loss of each SEER increment, this loses up to 9% of the efficiency.

The reduction inherently means that your electric bills are bound to soar. In case you have high bills piling up with other root causes ruled out, it can due to the age of you’re A/C unit causing the upsurge in electricity.

It is high time you consider replacing your air conditioner or alternatively AC repairs. Consult a local licensed expert for air conditioning services to perform a system evaluation scheduled for the next maintenance. We have experts within Florida with expert service for your air conditioner with annual maintenance.

  1. Humidity

The coil is detrimental in determining the state of your system in terms of functioning. The primary function of the evaporator coil is humidity extraction. With the system aging pasts its shelf life, the system reduces its functionality concerning its operational standards.

The moisture buildup leads to the creation of a humid environment in your home, and this further makes your home feel damp than fresh. Other signs that your evaporator coil needs replacement it’s the presence of mold growth or freezing.

  1. Other Related Variables

Apart from humidity, high electric bills, and age, which take a toll on your system, there are other factors which play a role in affecting the longevity of your air conditioner. Many manufacturers produce HVAC systems frequently. The frequent manufacturing leads to the development of different components in the systems, which might be far better or worse in another system.

The Power of Maintenance

The main secret behind a fully operational A/C unit is with the performance of a proper maintenance schedule. With proper maintenance, your system can work for up to 20 years without breaking down instead of 10 years maximum operation after installation.

A crucial essential thing to remember is that the performance level of your system is different compared to other states. The shelf life of your system is enhanced with the seasonal tune-ups and the regular air filter changes.

How to Increase the Longevity of your System

The average service period of most systems within Florida serve 5 to 7 years, which is less compared to other states owing to the seasonal tropical climate. The external system is profoundly affected by the climatic conditions and further by other factors such as humidity, heat, salt, and sulfur from storms.

During the summer, your air conditioner is put to the ultimate test with the increasing heat taking a toll on the system. However, there are small AC services you can carry out in your home, like changing the air filter of your system. Before seeking air conditioning services, you can purchase the right filter at a convenient hardware store nearest to you.

It is essential to ensure that the condenser unit is strategically located to prolong the life of your air conditioner. The condensers on the air conditioners which are located facing north of your home tend to outlive condensers which have been found on the other sides of the house. This is because they are less affected by sunlight exposure. Experts recommend that you cover the condenser during fall and winter to reduce the buildup of debris.

Tips to Increase Performance of your Air Conditioner

In case you want to get the most out of your air conditioner, ensure that you have a licensed professional perform the AC maintenance annually. These tune-ups are usually less costly and can save you the expenses on replacement of an air conditioner.

With AC repairs from a technician, they can check on the condenser to ensure the unit is efficient and clean. In case it is clogged with dirt, they can remove the dust from the fins and the outer housing to increase its overall operation and long lasting performance.

It is also highly recommended that you keep the thermostat set at a slightly warmer temperature during the months of summer to avoid frequent AC repair. It is advised to maintain the room temperature at 72 degrees during the hot summers. At 72 degrees, it is comfortable around the home compared to external humid conditions.

Maintaining your air conditioner will increase the longevity of your AC repair efforts, which will serve you for years. In the case of AC services, you can schedule an appointment with an expert staff to ensure your AC unit is running efficiently.

Air Conditioner Maintenance
Air Conditioner Maintenance

25 Simple, Effective AC Maintenance and Home Cooling Tips

Air conditioning is often one of the most expensive contributors to energy costs in the average household. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most temperamental services. The 25 tips below are simple, easy to do at home and can help maximize the quality of the air conditioning services in your home.

List of 25 AC Maintenance Tips:

Do Some Research On How Your HVAC Unit Works

The standard modern air conditioning unit is comprised of an outdoor unit and an indoor unit. Unless you live in an apartment or condo complex, the outdoor unit typically sits outside your home next to one of the exterior walls. The indoor unit, also known as the evaporator, is the main duct that is located inside your home near your furnace.

Make It A Priority to Clean Your AC Units

You should make it a priority to continually inspect the two basic parts of your AC services unit to make sure that they are clean, working properly and free of debris. You can use a vacuum with a simple hose attachment, a damp rag and a brush with soft bristles. You may have to use a screwdriver to remove the covers on each part of the unit. Be as gentle as you clean the unit!

Remove Debris Buildup

Every year you should lift the top of the exterior unit and remove larger debris such as leaves by hand.

Invest In A Programmable Thermostat

While you may not want to spend money on your AC unit, a programmable thermostat is one of the simplest ways that you can actually end up saving a good deal of money on your monthly bills. These thermostats allow for automatic cooling as the temperature rises and falls. Many smart home thermostats also allow you to change the temperature from your smartphone, ensuring you never leave the AC blasting while you are at work or out of town.

Do A Complete Pre-Summer Check

The summer months take a toll on your AC system. The best way to keep it running efficiently and keep you cool is to use a simple checklist to assess your system before a problem occurs. You may also want to schedule an annual appointment with an AC repair service professional to check your indoor unit, outdoor unit, vents, and ductwork prior to the hottest months of the year.

Replace Your Filters

Replacing your AC filters is probably one of the most boring household expenses you have. However, pulling out the filter and checking it for buildup can help you avoid a lot of problems and maximize the flow of cool air in your house, saving you money on your electric bill.

Monitor Your Exterior Unit For Sinking

Many homeowners don’t realize that exterior AC units can sink or “settle” over the years. This is especially true in yards that tend to collect rainwater or areas with a lot of rain. There’s no real problem if your exterior AC unit has sunk a little. However, you want to make sure that all of the lines are level and that the unit itself is staying dry and isn’t settling in pools of collected water. If you notice severe sinking, you may want to call a professional AC repair company to evaluate the issue.

Check That The Unit Is Level

Just as the pad can sink, it can begin to lean to one side or the other. Use a professional level to make sure your unit isn’t leaning in order to make sure it is working at its prime.

Keep The Drain Tubed Unclogged

A clogged drain tube can make all of the AC services in your home feel sluggish and can also lead to a buildup of bacteria-filled water. You can unclog the drain tube by simply pouring one cup of bleach down the drain and then slowly pour about a gallon of warm water down it.

Try A Duct Or Vent Booster In Warmer Rooms

Many older or forced-air AC systems often leave the home with a room that always seems to be warmer than the rest of the house. Adding a vent booster or duct booster in warmer rooms helps to increase the flow of cool air. In-line duct boosters are excellent because they automatically turn on whenever your cooling system is running.

Close Vents In Low-Traffic Rooms

Many homes have rooms that are not used as much as others. You can maximize your air conditioning services by slightly closing the vents in rooms that aren’t being actively used. This is often a basement or a spare room.

Consider An Attic Fan

Ever wonder what people did before air conditioning? A whole-house fan, also called an attic fan due to its general location, cools the house by drawing the cooler air from outside in via open windows and screen doors. While these fans won’t replace your AC services, they can easily clear your home of warm, stagnant air in a matter of minutes.

Treat Yourself To A Quieter AC Unit

If you are dealing with noisy air conditioning services in your home, you may benefit from a compressor sound blanket. These simply go over the outdoor unit to quiet any noise. You can find information from the manufacturer of your unit or call a professional AC repair services company to learn more.

Keep Curtains and Blinds Closed

Many people want a lot of sunlight in the home for bright views. During summer months it is easy for sunlight to quickly warm a home. Keeping curtains and blinds closed when you are not home or not in a certain part of the house keeps the cool air in and warm air out.

Deep Clean Your Unit

Air conditioning units naturally pull in the air that may contain dust and debris. Gently scrubbing the unit with a soft-bristle brush and a gentle cleanser can get rid of a lot of this buildup.

Realign Bent Fins

The delicate “fins” that line your outdoor unit are responsible for pulling in air to be cooled. These can easily become bent, damaged or crushed together over time. Take a standard butter knife and insert it in between the damaged funs about ½” to gently realign the fins as close to their original shape as possible.

Invest In A Fin Comb

If your fins have a lot of damage, you may want to invest in a fin comb.

Check Insulation

Air conditioning can become stagnant if there is damaged insulation. Checking that the insulation can save money and make AC more efficient.

Double Check Your Outdoor Unit Is The Correct Size

Air conditioning units are specifically sized to be proportionate to the square footage they will be cooling. An AC unit that is too small will have to work overtime to keep up with the amount of space.

Attempt DIY Air Condition Repair When Possible

AC technicians can be very costly. If you or someone in your home is comfortable working on the unit, you can usually do basic air condition repair at home for just the cost of parts.

Check For Leaks

At least once a year you should inspect your entire home for leaks. These tend to be by the windows or doors. You do this by lighting incense and walking around your home’s exterior to see if the smoke is being sucked toward the outside. This likely means there is a leak.

Clean The Unit’s Evaporator Coil

There is an evaporator coil door inside the blower on the home’s interior unit. Use a damp rag to clean remove dust from the coil and then use a no-rinse coil cleaner to gently clean the coil.

Consider A Garage Unit

If you work frequently in your garage, consider investing in a garage unit that can run separately from your home’s unit.

Wrap Your Outdoor Unit After Summer

You can extend the lifespan of your home’s exterior AC unit by covering it with plywood or another approved type of wrap during colder months.

Dispose Of Old Units Properly

Finally, if you find yourself needing a new AC unit, make sure you speak to your city’s waste management authorities before you simply throw it in the trash.

Air Conditioner Tips in Peak Condition
Air Conditioner Tips in Peak Condition

A Detailed Guide for Keeping Your Air Conditioner in Peak Condition

The start of summer is just around the corner. In certain parts of the country, the temperatures are already rising. What all that means is that you need to ensure that your air conditioner is ready to take on another season of heavy work. You may very well need some air conditioning services rendered to see if your unit is up to the task, but before signing up for that, you can perform the maintenance procedures below and get it up to speed yourself.

Turn Off the Power Supply for Your Air Conditioning Unit

Whether you’re asking someone to conduct some AC repair or just taking on the challenge yourself, the first thing that must be done is to turn off the power supply. Things can get dangerous in a hurry if you neglect this important first step.

Err on the side of caution and turn everything off, including the switch at the shut-off box located close to the air conditioning unit itself as well as the power at the breaker.

Remember to shut off the power at:

  • The unit itself
  • The exterior shut-off box
  • The breaker

Take Out Any Foreign Materials Present in the Air Conditioner

If you’re air conditioner is located outside your home, chances are that it will catch at least some debris. Fallen leaves and twigs are among the materials most likely to fall into your air conditioning unit.

Grab a screwdriver and start to take off the fasteners so that you will be able to free the fan grill of the air conditioner. Proceed to remove any debris that may be stuck to that fan grill. You can just use your hand to do that or a more powerful cleaning tool.

You can also use the cleaning tool to remove foreign materials from the outer covers of the unit. A vacuum with a brush attachment works great for this particular job.

Removing the foreign materials involves:

  • Taking out the fan grill
  • Cleaning the fan grill with either your hand or a cleaning tool
  • Use the cleaning tool to clean the outside covers

Give the Air Conditioner’s Fins a Shower

The next part is where many people trip up and calling on an AC repair professional could be necessary because it’s so easy to mess up. The fins inside the air conditioning unit can accumulate dirt and debris, but they are also more prone to damage.

In order to clean them properly, you need to use a garden hose producing a gentle stream of water. Place the hose inside the unit and begin spraying the fins inside out to expel the dirt particles that have built up.

Avoid using stronger cleaners because those can easily cause permanent damage to the fins and to the air conditioning unit by extension.

To properly clean the fins:

  • Use a gentle stream of water from a hose
  • Clean from the inside out
  • Refrain from using any powerful cleaning tool

Realign the Fins of the Air Conditioner

After cleaning the fins of the air conditioning unit, you now need to get them lined up properly. Usually, a professional who specializes in rendering air conditioning services will use a specific tool for this job.

There’s no need to go out and get that fin-straightening tool however. A butter knife will work just as well for the job. Just like with the cleaning, remember to be gentle with the fins to prevent them from being damaged.

Reminders for realigning the fins:

  • A butter knife will work as well as a specialized tool
  • Exerting too much force is unnecessary and potentially damaging

Create a Good Environment around the Air Conditioner

Air conditioners work better when they are given plenty of space. To do this for your air conditioning unit, you can clear out the debris surrounding the condenser. Do some general cleaning around that spot and cut branches if needed.

In an effort to keep debris away from your air conditioner, you may think to keep it covered. Doing that will only make it an attractive rest spot for small animals though, so remember to remove the cover.

Items that need to be removed from the area surrounding the air conditioner include:

  • Leaves
  • Branches
  • Any other materials that could adversely affect airflow

Level the Air Conditioner Properly

Getting your air conditioner back on level is important because the compressor inside can suffer otherwise. This would seem like a job you leave up to an AC services provider, but you can handle this yourself.

You first have to get a level and then use it to check the alignment of your unit’s condenser. If the unit is level, then you can move forward to the next step. If it isn’t you will have to pick up some shims and use them to correct the issue.

Air conditioners not on the level may suffer from:

  • A broken condenser
  • Poor performance

Get the Evaporator Coil in Working Condition

Open up the inside of your air conditioner now and locate the evaporator. It should be found either within the inside blower or next to it.

Start brushing the coil gently to remove some of the dirt and follow that up by spraying it with some coil cleaner. AC services providers get their coil cleaner from home improvement stores and you should find one there too.

The cleaner should remove more dirt from the coil and transport the particles to the drain pan. Clean that pan next using bleach, soap, and hot water. Lastly, pour a solution made out of bleach and water into the drain. The solution should be made out of equal parts of bleach and water.

Items That Will Help Clean the Evaporator Coil:

  • Bleach
  • Brush
  • Coil cleaner
  • Soap
  • Water

Unclog the Evaporator Drain

If the bleach solution did not go quickly through the drain, that means you will have to clear out some clogs. You first have to find where the drain line leads by following it.

After finding the exit point for the drain line, you can place a vacuum inside of it. Take the filter out of the vacuum first. Create a seal around the vacuum and the drain line by using some tape or some cloth. Let the vacuum run for a couple of minutes.

Just remember:

  • Remove the filter from the vacuum
  • Form a tight seal around the vacuum and the drain line’s end
  • Give the vacuum a couple of minutes to clear out the clogs

Replace the Blower Filter on the Air Conditioner

Find out where the filter enclosure is on your unit. Grab a screwdriver and pry open the enclosure. Take out the old filter and then slide in the new one while remembering to line it up properly. Shut off the enclosure by placing the door back on.

Some notes about the replacement:

  • Remember to get a filter with a similar airflow rating to the one already in the unit
  • Specialty HEPA and purifying filters may not work with your AC unit
  • Check with the manufacturer to learn which filters are okay to use

Turn On Your Air Conditioning Unit

With all of the steps above completed, you can power up your air conditioner and see how it’s working. If it’s working great, then you have don’t have to worry about it again for a while. If it’s not producing the type of air you need, there’s likely something more serious affecting it.

You will have to bring an AC repair specialist in if:

  • There’s a leak in the air conditioning unit
  • Refrigerant levels are off
  • Ducts are not properly cleaned

As a homeowner, you’ve done all that you can, so don’t hesitate to bring in the pros if some problems regarding your air conditioner do persist. It’s better to have those problems nipped in the bud as early as possible instead of having them pop up during the exceptionally warm days of summer.

Air Condition DIY Filter Cleaning
Air Condition DIY Filter Cleaning

8 Simple DIY Ways To Save Money On Air Conditioning And Get Better Air Quality

The cost to run your HVAC unit can make up more than 50% of your home’s total energy bills, according to a recent nationwide report done by the Department of energy. Running the air conditioning unit is typically the biggest energy bill for the average homeowner. With the summer months upon us, it can be frustrating to hear the constant sound of the air conditioner running your home and just know that it’s costing you money.

These eight tips listed below are simple, free ways to help your home’s air conditioner run more efficiently. This will save you money and help keep your energy bills down during the summer months. Saving money on pricey electric bills can give you excess funds to spend on those fun summer activities that are much more enjoyable than sitting alone at home in the air conditioning!

Clean Debris and Overgrown Grass From Around the Outdoor Unit

The state of your outdoor HCAV unit can greatly affect the quality of the air conditioning services inside your home. If your air conditioner seems sluggish, you may want to do a deep clean of any debris from the outdoor unit before you call for professional AC repair. These outdoor units tend to be clogged by things like grass trimmings, fallen leaves, dust from the air, and general lawn-related debris. You will want to clean out your HVAC unit carefully with a damp rag and a small, soft brush.

Check Air Filters and Vacuum Indoor Vents

Make sure that all your indoor vents are completely unblocked in order to get the best AC service. Take a vacuum with a hose attachment and vacuum away any dirt, dust and debris. Take a slightly damp rag and clean the vent’s surface and around the vent’s slats. Try to utilize the rage to clean in as far as you can. If you want to do a really deep clean or thing you have a partially clogged vent, simply use a screwdriver to remove the vent hood and extend your arm inside the vent to clean it. You want to make sure your HVAC system is off when you do this for safety reasons. Make sure all vents are wide open in the rooms you wish to keep cool. Similarly, if you have rooms that are rarely used during the summer months, you can close the vents partway or all the way to save on air conditioning costs.

Adjust Your Thermostat Up or Down a Few Degrees at a Time

Many people come home after a long day and are tempted to crank up the air conditioning services in their home to cool down immediately. You can save a great deal of electricity and money on your bill by simply moving the thermostat up or down a few degrees at a time. Ideally, you should aim for about five degrees cooler or warmer depending on the outside temperature and how cool you like it when you sleep at night.

Keep Lamps and Electric Devices That Product Heat Away From Air Vents

Having a bright lamp or other high-energy electric devices that produce heat right by a vent can greatly disintegrate the level of cool AC service your unit can expend in a particular room. This could be a television or other electronic device. Simply move lights or other warm electronic to a different place in the room to allow your vent to produce the best-quality AC.

Cool the Air Naturally by Closing Curtains

Direct sunlight can be appealing for a cheery mood inside your home, yet it naturally increases the temperature inside your house. Leaving your blinds and curtains open while you are out for the day at work or running errands will only leave you coming home to a warm house, causing you to feel like you need to crank up the air conditioner. Close curtains and blinds to make the most of the cool air already inside the home during the hottest hours of the day. You’ll be surprised what a big difference this can make on naturally cooling your home.

Thoroughly Flush Your AC’s Drain Line

Your air conditioner is assigned a specific drain that is usually in the home’s basement somewhere around the same place the furnace is located. Flushing out this drain line can keep your HVAC unit from getting clogged and slowing down the flow of your air conditioning services. You can easily clean it out by simply pouring one cup of common household bleach down this drain and follow that by rinsing the drain line out with a full gallon of water. This should clean the line. However, you want to ensure that you have the correct drain line before you flush it out.

Keep Your Dryer and Oven Off During Prime Summer Hours

The summer brings exceptionally warm hours during the peak of the day. You can save on air condition costs and maximize the cool air by avoiding using these two appliances during those hot hours. Running the dryer pulls heated air inside your house, making it better to run it at night or in the morning before work. Your oven naturally heats the air from your kitchen into other rooms. Avoid using it unless it’s necessary. If you have to use either appliance, set a timer so you can be efficient about using them only the necessary amount of time. Summer is a great time to grill out!

Check That Your Home Is Properly Insulated

You can waste a great deal of energy and money if your house’s ductwork isn’t properly sealed. The ductwork that runs through spaces like the attic can often start to leak over time, essentially meaning you’re paying to blow cold air in places that go unused. You can DIY the ducts by running your hand over the ductwork to feel for leaks or checking them visually. These can be sealed with a duct-sealing tape that can be bought at any home store. You also should schedule a professional AC repair maintenance visit early in the summer to check for leaks.