With summer in full swing, the last thing you need is for your air conditioning system to break down unexpectedly. But it's not uncommon for A/C systems to conk out right when homeowners need them most. The following highlights 4 common reasons why your A/C system could give out this summer and what you can do to keep it from happening.
You Didn't Bother to Change Your Air Filter
Believe it or not, this is one of the most common reasons why A/C systems break down during the summer. Homeowners tend to forget they must change the air filter on a regular basis. As a result, the old air filter continues to accumulate dust, dirt and debris until the filter is completely clogged. Once this happens, the A/C system's blower fan motor works harder and harder to draw indoor air past the clog until it eventually fails, causing your A/C system to finally break down.
To keep this from happening, you should always check and change your air filter regularly. Most experts recommend replacing your air filters on a monthly basis, although this rule of thumb usually varies depending on the type of filter used and how often you use your A/C system. It's not out of the ordinary for filters on lightly used systems to be changed every 3 months.
You Forgot All about Regular Maintenance
Just as your car needs regularly scheduled service every so often, so does your home's A/C system. Unfortunately, many homeowners tend to put off this essential service for a wide variety of reasons. There are plenty of hidden problems that a seasoned HVAC technician can easily solve if caught early enough. Ignoring these problems through lax or nonexistent maintenance could cause them to snowball into more serious and much more expensive issues.
Scheduling an annual A/C checkup is the ounce of prevention that's definitely worth pounds of expensive cure. An HVAC service agreement not only provides the basic maintenance your A/C needs each year, but you can also benefit from other perks of the service, including priority service calls and no-cost emergency service.
You Ignored Those Weird Sounds Coming from Your A/C
When your A/C unit goes bump in the night, you'll want to listen to what it has to say. Those odd noises that are coming from your normally-silent A/C system could indicate a variety of serious problems, from a bad blower motor or worn-out belt to a failing compressor or a bad refrigerant leak. Ignoring these noises in hopes that they'll go away on their own is a recipe for a sudden breakdown and an expensive A/C repair.
Instead of turning a deaf ear to your A/C system, have an experienced technician take a listen. In most cases, the culprit can be identified and fixed for a small sum, which could save you from spending hundreds or even thousands on extensive A/C repairs.
You Let Your Pets Get Too Close to the Outdoor Condenser Unit
As crazy as it might seem, your own beloved pets could be the culprit in your A/C system's sudden demise. For instance, dogs use their own urine to mark their territory. If a dog decides to lay claim to your outdoor A/C condenser, the corrosive urine could eat away at the condenser coil and the delicate fins lining the coil. Such corrosion could cause refrigerant leaks, eventually leading to poor performance and eventual system breakdown.
If you catch your dog leaving its mark on your outdoor A/C condenser, you'll want to hose it off as soon as possible. To prevent this from happening in the future, consider cordoning off the unit with a fence. There are several creative ways you can fence off your A/C, just as long as there's another clearance between it and the fence to allow for uninterrupted airflow.
For more information and assistance with repairing your A/C unit, contact professional HVAC contractors, such as those at Universal Refrigeration.