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Air Conditioning Care And Troubleshooting: A Homeowner's Introduction

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With June fading into July, the hottest days of summer are still to come. If you haven't turned on your air conditioning system yet, you're sure to need it soon. Before you do, it's important that you understand not only how to take care of your air conditioning system but also how to spot the signs of trouble. Here are a few tips to help you do both so you're not left overwhelmed with heat this summer.

Caring For Your Air Conditioning

Keeping your air conditioner running well requires a bit of proactive care. Before the season gets too much further into warm weather, there are a few things you should do.

Clear Around The Condenser: Before you actually start the air conditioner for the first time this year, take time to check around the condenser unit outside. Clear away any weeds, shrubs, or other growth that may be around it.

Replace The Air Filter: The air filter in your air conditioner is an essential part of the air flow cycle. When the filter is dirty, the air conditioner can't pull enough air into the system to properly cool your home. Make sure you replace the filter at the beginning of every cooling season, as filters can get quite dirty throughout a season's use.

Call Your AC Technician: Schedule a pre-season inspection and seasonal maintenance appointment. Even if your air conditioner is barely used, it's still important to have it looked at once a year. This inspection includes testing the refrigerant levels, the system pressure, the thermostat, the coils, and the wiring. Your technician will be able to catch small problems before they become serious issues.

Invest In A Dehumidifier: Remember that a key part of your air conditioner's role is to draw humidity out of the air. The more humid the air in your home, the harder your air conditioner will have to work. Investing in a dehumidifier will help you to minimize the demand on your air conditioning system and potentially prolong its lifespan.

Recognizing Trouble Signs

In addition to understanding how to care for your air conditioner, you should also be able to recognize the signs that your cooling system is malfunctioning or in need of service.

Hearing Unusual Sounds: Your air conditioning compressor naturally makes some noise when it's running, but you get used to the standard sounds that it makes. If you're hearing something abnormal, that should be cause for concern. Any kind of whirring sounds from the compressor could indicate that the compressor motor is failing. Grinding is also a concern because it could indicate that the blower motor is malfunctioning or seizing up. If the compressor just makes a clicking sound when you try to turn it on or makes a buzzing noise when it's running, both are potential signs of electrical issues.

Spending More On Repairs: If you've found yourself spending a lot more money on air conditioning repairs over the last few years, that's often an indication that it's time to replace your cooling system. If you start needing to call a technician frequently again this year, it might be worth looking into replacement instead of repair.

Your Costs (And The Temperatures) Increase: Since your air conditioning system is such a complex structure with multiple interactive components, when one thing fails to operate the way it should, it can lead to more problems. This can actually cause the system to work harder than it needs to, and it may still not function at its fullest potential. If your electric bill is going up and the temperature in your home is warmer than it should be on a regular basis, that's a sign that there are problems with your air conditioner.

For more information, contact a company like Metro Air.