In the world of computer repair, there’s a common expression: “Did you try turning the computer on and off?”
It’s sometimes the most simple solution that solves the most difficult problems. Likewise, the world of HVAC has its own expression: “Did you try changing out the air filter?”
Here are a few examples of terrible AC problems that are actually just air filter issues.
Short-cycling is when the air conditioner turns on and off too frequently. One big reason for this is that the AC unit is too powerful for the home. This isn’t all that uncommon; it happens when an HVAC contractor doesn’t make the proper calculations when sizing a unit for a home. In this case, the only way to fix short-cycling is by replacing the unit entirely with the help of an AC installation expert in New City.
Why is short-cycling such a problem? For one, it’s not going to let your home cool down. Second, it takes much more energy to start the AC up than it does to run it continuously, so it will lead to excessive wear and tear. Third, all that extra energy output will show up on your energy bill!
Of course, it could also just be caused by a dirty air filter, so you should check that first before tearing out your existing AC.
Air Duct Leaks
Problems with the air ducts are common reasons why you might not feel the air in certain rooms of the home. The air ducts are a series of vents that transfer conditioned air through the home, and they need to maintain a tight seal for that entire length. If there are any loose sections or broken seals–which tends to happen after years of use–the conditioned air can escape through them.
In fact, it’s estimated that up to 30% of energy is lost through these leaks and disconnects. If you haven’t had your ducts inspected lately, now might be a good time if you’re experiencing high energy bills or warm rooms.
But also, these symptoms could easily be caused by a dirty air filter. Less airflow through the filter means less air in general, and that could prevent the AC from cooling all of the rooms.
Refrigerant is a chemical that flows through a set of copper tubes in your air conditioner. Without being too scientific, we’ll just say that the refrigerant is what helps absorb warm air in your home and dispels it outside. Refrigerant flows through these copper tubes thanks to a combination of the proper temperatures and pressure, so a refrigerant leak would be bad news.
Among the many awful problems that a refrigerant leak can bring, one of them is frozen evaporator coils. The evaporator coil is what removes the warm air from your home, and a refrigerant leak is one of the leading causes for why they freeze up–thus preventing airflow.
On the other hand, it could just be that you have a dirty air filter. The lack of airflow from a dirty filter can cause the evaporator coil to get too cold, freeze it, and leave the impression that there’s a leak in the system.