How Routine Air Conditioning Service Can Reduce AC Repair Costs

Air conditioning is essential for lots of homes during the sweltering summer months in West Palm Beach. However, the expenses associated with running an AC are substantial. Find out how scheduled air conditioning service can decrease AC repair costs, and learn energy-saving habits to help your unit run more efficiently. With these tips, you’ll have a comfortable home this summer without draining your bank account.

What Routine AC Service Includes

Air conditioning maintenance is an affordable, predictable yearly charge that pays you back by reducing repair costs and extending your unit’s life span. Here are some critical maintenance steps that help avoid air conditioner breakdowns:

  • Replace the air filter: A dirty filter slows down airflow and causes your air conditioner to work harder, burning more energy and increasing the risk of overheating. Changing your air conditioner's dirty air filter with a clean one as part of your annual maintenance visit, and every 30 to 90 days throughout the year, boosts excellent airflow and efficiency.
  • Clean the evaporator coil: The indoor evaporator coil collects dirt and dust as time goes by, reducing its ability to absorb heat. This can cause the refrigerant in the coil to freeze, preventing your air conditioner from operating effectively. Cleaning the coil removes this insulating layer and helps the refrigerant to operate effectively.
  • Clean the condenser coil: The outdoor condenser coil releases heat soaked up by the refrigerant. If it’s covered with cobwebs, grass clippings and other debris, the heat transfer process is impaired. Cleaning the condenser coil improves the unit’s performance dramatically, reducing wear and tear on your air conditioner that could cause breakdowns.
  • Straighten the coils’ fins: The aluminum fins on the evaporator and condenser coils can become bent, cutting down on the airflow and decreasing performance. Straightening the fins with a fin comb returns51 them to their original position to restore ideal airflow.
  • Lubricate moving parts: Friction in the motor and other moving elements produces heat and causes undue wear and tear. Scheduled lubrication reduces friction, ensuring smooth operation and cutting down on the need for repairs.
  • Check refrigerant levels: A low refrigerant charge is another answer for why your AC can freeze up, resulting in longer run times, comfort problems and avoidable AC repairs. An HVAC professional uses specific tools to check and adjust refrigerant levels as needed to verify proper performance and prevent a mid-season breakdown.

Other Ways to Reduce AC Repair Costs

Once-a-year maintenance is a key factor in reducing AC repair charges, but here are some other ideas to help your AC unit operate reliably all summer long:

  • Turn the temperature up: Increasing the thermostat setting limits the wear and tear on your air conditioner. Pick a comfortable temperature and avoid setting the thermostat any lower.
  • Use a programmable thermostat: When set correctly, a programmable thermostat helps control your home’s temperature in a more efficient manner, reducing the strain on your AC unit. It's a good idea to program setback periods of 7 to 10 degrees while you’re away or sleeping to conserve on energy costs and further diminish wear and tear.
  • Seal air leaks: Gaps and cracks around windows and doors allow warm, humid air into your home. Try using caulk and weatherstripping to avoid overworking your air conditioning unit.
  • Put in additional insulation: An appropriate attic insulation level encourages consistent indoor temperatures and will reduce your AC’s workload. If you can spot the attic floor or joists poking through the insulation you already have in your home, add more.
  • Block solar heat gain: The sun’s heat warms your home, increasing cooling demand. Getting window coverings and pulling the blinds or shades during the hot afternoon blocks solar heat gain and lowers the chance of a mid-season breakdown.
  • Use ceiling fans: The wind chill effect produced by ceiling fans makes a room feel about 4 degrees cooler, allowing you to raise the thermostat setting without losing comfort. It’s a good idea to shut the fan off when you leave the room, as fans cool people, not spaces.
  • Use a dehumidifier: For those who are located in a humid part of North America, high humidity levels might make your home feel cool but clammy, causing you to turn down the temperature. A whole-house dehumidifier eliminates unwanted moisture, giving your AC a much-needed break.
  • Make sure your vents are not obstructed123: Closed or sealed off air vents throw off the balance of return and supply air, which may cause your air conditioning to break down. To avoid this, always keep at least 80 percent of your registers open, and make sure no furniture, curtains or rugs unintentionally hinder airflow. Boost circulation further by keeping interior doors open as much as possible.
  • Invest in an energy-efficient air conditioner: If your air conditioner is more than 10 years old, consider upgrading to a more energy-efficient system. In addition to enhanced efficiency, a new system is also less likely to break down or encounter maintenance issues than an older unit, lowering your repair fees in the long run.

Schedule AC Service in West Palm Beach

By investing in routine air conditioning maintenance and implementing other recommended home-cooling habits, you’ll enjoy a comfortable interior with decreased repair costs this summer. Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning offers quality AC tune-ups to maximize efficiency and prolong your air conditioner’s life span. We can also upgrade your AC unit if yours is past its prime.

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