No one likes to come home to a hot house, especially during the steamy summer months in Lincoln NE. If your air conditioning unit just isn’t cutting it there may be a few reason and things to check to determine why.
First things first, homeowners tend to think if the system is running a lot it must be undersized. That may be the case, but remember if your system is running for long cooling cycles it can actually mean your system is doing just what it is supposed to do. Today’s cooling systems are made more efficiently, so the act of running for a long period of time doesn’t always mean money out of your pocket or extreme wear and tear on your system. Remember ACs condition the home, not just cool the home. One of the most important tasks of the system is to pull humidity out of your home’s air. This is done only while the system is running so shorter runs often mean clammy air.
Your thermostat is the one of the most important components of your heating and cooling system. It controls the system, determining when the system needs to begin conditioning your home. Make these quick checks on your thermostat to make sure it is operating correctly. Check that someone hasn’t changed the settings on the thermostat? Is your set point lower than before causing your system to work harder to reach even cooler temps? If that not the case check to make sure the thermostat is operating correctly. If you have another thermometer in the home leave it near the thermostat. When a cooling cycle begins check the temperature on both the thermostat and the thermometer. Also check when the cooling cycle ends to make sure your thermostat is on target and only cooling to or just below your set point. If your system continues cooling well below your set point, there may be causing your thermostat to malfunction and it wouldn’t hurt to have a service technician look things over.
When is the last time you’ve check your filter? All too often issues with your home’s air conditioning system is caused by a dirty air filter. The filter not only causes your air handler or furnace to work harder to circulate air through your home, but if the system is choked by a dirty air filter it could lead to more problems. If the system can’t pass enough air through the indoor coil eventually the coil will begin to freeze up and turn into a block of ice. You may thing this mean colder air in your home, but it really means reduced air flow and more trouble. Checking your filter and replacing or cleaning it regularly will also keep your indoor coil from getting clogged up with dirt and reducing its efficiency during the heat transfer process.
Checking the indoor or evaporator coil is not as easy as checking the condenser or AC coil outside. It’s not uncommon for the outdoor coil to get clogged up with dirt, pollen (cottonwood) and grass clippings. If the outdoor unit’s coil is covered it will restrict air flow through the condenser and make it harder for the system to release the heat pulled out of your home. If your air conditioning unit needs cleaned grab a garden hose and with medium to light pressure spray the coil at a downward angle to rinse off the debris.
Is your home doing its best to keep the heat out of your home or is your AC fighting harder than it should? In many homes the thermostat is located in a centralized location, possibly the hallway. This may also be the location of the attic access or whole house fan. These can be may part of the problem. Make sure these penetrations in your ceiling are sealed well so that hot air isn’t just pouring into your home and causing your thermostat to continue calling of cooling when other areas may be plenty cool.
Both an undercharged and overcharged cooling system will not cool efficiently. It may seem odd that too much refrigerant would be a bad thing, but asking various components of the air conditioner to operate at higher than intended pressures can be worse than the unit being undercharged. This is why Bryant installers use of digital refrigerant gauges during the installation process and we follow up with a senior technician to double check those refrigerant levels are spot on and operation reads are right in line with manufacturer specifications.
Low refrigerant levels could be a sign of a leak in the system. Remember the air conditioner’s refrigeration system is a closed system and it should in theory not change. A small leak in the system may take years to make a difference, but as time goes leaks typically worsen and will affect your cooling quicker. A service technician can locate the source of the leak an provide options. Sometimes the leak can be brazed or patched, and other times a component replacement or system replacement is needed.
An undersized air conditioning system can struggle to keep up with high outdoor temperatures. If you’ve made it through these various checks and your ac is still struggling to keep up, running for what seems forever, your system maybe undersized. Bryant can evaluate your home and the determine through calculations what is the proper size for your home while reviewing your ductwork to ensure increasing the size of your air conditioner will not have a negative affect on your comfort.
If you need assistance finding the source of your discomfort or determining a proper air conditioning replacement call the experts at Bryant 402-470-8162. They offer NATE certified service technicians the experience to find your problems quickly and FREE estimates performed by trained estimators to find the best comfort solution for you and your home.