Four signs your Air Conditioner may be working too hard!
There comes that time of year when the humidity level rises, and the word sticky is used more than expected! It is sticky outside and inside! “I feel sticky, oh so sticky, I feel sticky and witty and bright!” as Natalie Wood may have sung in West Side Story had there not been air conditioning. Or, as Snoop Dogg says “sticky icky icky” which I am sure he is referring to the lack of air conditioning in a room or maybe he is subtly mentioning that someone should be servicing their air conditioners more often. Either way, the hot summer months are still on us and here are some signs that your AC system may be working too hard or not performing up to speed.
- How old is your air conditioner? If you say, well how am I supposed to know that!?!? That my friend, is a good indication that the air conditioner is getting up there in age. On every air conditioner there should be an identification or name plate/sticker which can tell you how old your A/C is. Next time you are outside have a look or make note of it the next time you mow the lawn. An air conditioner, if well maintained, can last you around 12 to 15 years. The older the unit, the more there is a chance for problems to occur and the performance of the unit is worse. We encourage you to maintain your air conditioner on a yearly basis. The cost to benefit ratio far outweighs lack of preventative maintenance.
- Have your utility bills been on the rise? The heating and cooling of your home, for the most part is the highest drain on your energy sources. Older HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) equipment in poor condition will operate much less efficiently, which will increase your electrical consumption. However, keep the weather in mind, some months are hotter than others, so your air conditioner may have been working harder than in one month than another, but an upward trend in electrical use is a sign of an inefficient system. If you are concerned with an upward spike in energy bills, schedule an A/C maintenance and checkup. Recent movements in technology have produced air conditioning units that are far more efficient than 10 years ago (higher SEER ratings) and new systems break down less overtime. The investment in an efficient and high-quality product will reduce your energy costs and you will be able to see the payback (from new unit purchase). Sometimes however, it can be as simple as a loose duct wasting cool air by flowing into the attic, which can be fixed quickly and inexpensively.
- Common misconception. Most people believe that the air conditioner simply pumps cold air into your house, and this is what provides you with your desired home comfort. This helps the process but what really provides the comfort in your home is that your air conditioners main duty is to actually – for lack of a better word – “suck” the humidity out of your house. If your air conditioner is on but you still feel that hot humid sticky feeling than your A/C is not doing its job. If you go outside on a hotter day while the air conditioning is on you should be able to hold your hand above the fan and feel warm air being blown out of your house. If the temperature of the air is not warm, then the performance of your A/C could be compromised.
- Breakdowns and repairs. Depending again on the age and the other points raised in this email, breakdowns and repairs could be a factor showing that your air conditioner is working too hard. If your A/C has been running smoothly with regular preventative maintenance checks and a problem arises, it probably makes sense to repair the problem. However, if your air conditioner, which is a mechanical device similar in some cases to a car, has multiple ongoing breakdowns then you may want to consider a new air conditioner over future costly repairs. You take your car in for routine checkups and oil changes, right? When those routine checkups reveal costly repairs needed, you have to consider buying a new car. Would you ask your mechanic? Why not ask an honest, trustworthy HVAC Service Technician. At some point, it just makes sense to scrap the car or A/C system and look for a more reliable car or A/C system. Reliability can go a long way in the air conditioner and car industry.
Before you forget about your air conditioner or furnace because they are playing hide and seek along the side of your house or in the attic… count to 5… and say “Come out, come out wherever you are!” Avoid an unnecessary hidden and most likely surprising expense and or replacement. Take the sticky icky icky out of your home, just give us a call at 281-251-3143. We will let you know if your AC system may be working too hard and provide economical solutions if it is. We are hear to “Create your comfort zone™”
We look forward to hearing from you,