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Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions? We have answers! If you don’t find your answer below, feel free to contact us.


1 ) How does an air conditioning system operate?

Heat is transferred from the inside of the building to the outside. The warm air is blown, with a fan, over the refrigerant lines coils, in the air handler. The refrigerant absorbs the heat. It passes through copper tubing to the outside condensing unit where a fan blows outside air over the hot coil. This discards the warmth and sends cooler refrigerant back to the air handler in a loop.

2 ) How do I troubleshoot my air conditioner to see if it needs repairs?

There are a few easy checks you can do before calling in a service technician:

  • If it’s a split system, check the indoor and outdoor disconnect (power) switches and make sure they are turned on. You can also check your building’s circuit breakers to make sure there isn’t a blown fuse.
  • Make sure the air filters are clean and not clogging up the airways. If they are dirty replace them and remember to do so every 3 months or as needed.
  • Your thermostat tells your air conditioner to turn on or off depending on the set temperature. If the temperature is set above the existing room temperature then the air handler cooling will not turn on. So, to make sure its working properly just set the temperature below the existing room temperature (and the system switch is set on ‘cool’ or ‘auto’) and it should turn on. With heating, it’s the opposite; the set temperature needs to be above the current room temperature and the system switch should be set on ‘heat’ or ‘auto’.

3 ) When should I replace my central air conditioning system?

Air conditioners built 20 to 30 years ago typically have a life expectancy of 15 years. Today you can get more mileage out of an ac system. However, for a unit to last a long time it needs to be properly maintained. This means changing filters regularly and having it serviced annually. Not only will this help a unit last longer but it will help avoid costly breakdowns in the future. For example, having the coils cleaned on a regular basis will keep them going for years before they need to be replaced, which can be costly.

4 ) How do I know when to get a new air conditioner?

When your system stops cooling properly there could be a variety of different causes. It could be a minor issue such as an electrical problem like a blown fuse or the refrigerant may be low. When repairs become more major and start to surpass the value of the system then its time to consider purchasing new equipment. Buying a new compressor is a common replacement for older units that are usually less then a new system. However, new air conditioners are most often more efficient - saving you money on your electric bill.

5 ) Is their an efficiency rating for AC systems?

Yes, the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ration (SEER) is a number that rates central air conditioning systems. Most new units have a SEER ratio of at least 10 whereas older units have SEERS of 6 or less.

A higher SEER rating means higher efficiency. This means less energy is required to power the unit, saving the customer money in operating costs.

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