Regular Check-ups Can Pay Off
By this time of year, many Arizona homeowners are on the verge of a panic attack if they even have a passing thought that something is going wrong with their air conditioner.
Yet these same homeowners often neglect to call an AC company every year for a check-up on their home's heating and cooling systems. A service like this will probably cost only about $120 and will check out more than 20 devices and mechanisms in your HVAC system.
Depending on the season, technicians will check out things like the heat exchanger and elements, the safety controls, the burner assembly, measurements for volts and amps, the tightness of electrical connections, the refrigerant, the cleaning and adjustment of blower components, and a whole lot more. They'll look at whatever involves keeping your AC and/or heating system running smoothly through the next few months.
A simple maintenance check-up can't find and forestall every problem, of course. But it could correct some issues before they become serious. And you, the homeowner, will have a chance to make friends with an AC technician whom you might have to call some day when a real crisis arrives.
Some heating and cooling companies also offer regular maintenance agreements that include extra visits each year that can provide emergency services and savings on repairs. These plans can also waive overtime, weekend, evening or holiday service charges when something goes wrong. Green Valley Cooling and Heating in Southern Arizona, for example, will make three visits a year and on two of them will clean the indoor coil for your system – an indoor service that many homeowners almost never get.
Having a regular visit with a technician is also a great time to discuss other issues you're wondering about, according to Joanna Buglewicz, Director of Marketing/Owner of Green Valley.
Possible issues might be:
- Why one room in your house is a lot hotter than the rest of the house during the summer. That might mean you want to install up-to-date dampers on the registers in your home. Or maybe your ducts need cleaning and resealing.
- Excessive water coming out of drain pipes near your outdoor compressor boxes.
- Why your electric bills seem to be getting bigger and bigger.
- Why your AC system makes a popping noise now and then. It could be a sign that your capacitor is about to break down. That's the device that sends an electrical jumpstart to your AC system.
- A really loud fan motor. Maybe the motor is overamping or the bearings are loose and the motor might need replacing.
- Trouble that you're having with calibrating your thermostat. Maybe you even want a new thermostat.
So, don't hesitate to have regular maintenance done on your HVAC system. You'll be glad you made contact with a competent technician before trouble comes your way.
There's always the possibility that your HVAC system doesn't need cleaning and repairs, it needs to be replaced. Regular maintenance may be able to keep it going longer, but if you're working with a heating and cooling company that you trust, you can get a straight answer about the system's lifespan.
What kind of an air conditioner do you have?
Most recently build homes have a split AC system with a compressor, condenser and outdoor coils in a metal box outside the house – and an evaporator/air handler inside the house. The evaporator/air handler can be in a closet or in the attic.
Other homes have a single package of compressor, condenser and evaporator/air handler on the roof.
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