Taking care of Your Air Conditioner

There are probably a number of reasons why your air conditioner (AC) may fail. As there are some that may require the skill and expertise of a professional, others you can handle on your own. When carrying out some research, you may stumble upon detailed information such as How to know about the problem of the electric control board of air conditioner, but all you need are the basics and leave the rest to an expert.

A common air conditioning problem is improper installation backed up by poor servicing and maintenance. If an AC is not installed correctly, it is likely to leak and has a poor flow of air. Quite often, the refrigerant does not match the manufacturer’s recommendations. All these factors contribute to the impaired functioning of a unit. The secret is to hire professionals during installation.

In case your AC fails, start by checking the circuit breakers and fuses. Let the unit cool down before doing so. There are also chances that the high-pressure limit switch on the compressor may have tripped. This mainly occurs on hot days.

Low refrigerant could be a result of undercharging during installation or leaks. This can be very harmful to the environment, and simply adding refrigerant does not solve the problem. You will want to hire an expert to fix any leaks, test, and repair them before charging the system with the right amount of refrigerant.

Proper maintenance on your part is also very crucial for the proper functioning of your AC. Do not allow filters and air conditioning coils to become dirty. This is likely to impair the AC, and the compressor or fans may permanently fail.

Electrical connections and contacts need to be regularly checked by professionals during service calls. Over time, wires and terminals tend to corrode. Moreover, compressor and fan controls can also wear out, especially if the system is turned on and off frequently.

Air conditioners usually feature a thermostat that regulates the temperatures and is located behind the control panel. This can be the cause of sensor problems. If the sensor is knocked out of position, the AC may not function well. Simply adjust its position by bending the wire that holds it so that it is near the coil but not in contact with it.

On humid days, check the condensate drain to ensure that it is not clogged and is draining properly. Improper mounting is a likely cause of this problem. If the unit repeatedly shuts on and off, it could also be a result of a dirty evaporator. Take some time to clean the entire unit and remove any obstructions.

Note that you may not be able to achieve maximum effectiveness under certain conditions. If temperatures are extremely high, you may not be able to achieve desired low temperatures, especially if your home is letting in heat from other areas such as windows and open doors. This is why you should always regularly maintain and consult a professional before making the decision to replace your air conditioner.

Analyzing and Fixing Car Air Conditioner Not Cooling Problem

Drivers living in hot climates and areas where the temperature climbs in the Summer want to stay cool. Having a non-working air conditioner system can be a nightmare. One of the first signs is that the system is producing warm air.

Car Air Conditioner Not Cooling?

There are many reasons why this can occur. A faulty compressor cracked hoses or simply needing a charge are some of the reasons why the a/c system may not be working properly. Before beginning to determine where the trouble lies, you should first understand how the system works.

A car’s a/c system works much like a refrigerator, though with a much different configuration. The compressor helps circulate the coolant throughout the system. Therefore, if it is not working properly, the coolant is not going to circulate.

The condenser removes heat by changing the gas freon to liquid. The evaporator sends heat to the coolant to cool the car’s inside temperature. In order to properly check the system, the full amount of refrigerant should be available. If not, this could indicate a leak.

However, you won’t know until the proper level of refrigerant is installed. Many automotive shops will offer this service, and the contents of the refrigerant are under pressure; therefore, if you lack experience, it’s best to let a professional handle the job.

The next step is to turn the system on and determine if the compressor is working. You may be able to spot the leaks, but not necessarily where they are originating. Adding a colored dye to the system may help with this task. After the system is running, check all hoses and fittings. These are the simplest parts to replace. If they are leaking even a small amount, the system could be losing pressure and, therefore, producing warm or slightly warm air.

Another detail to consider is whether the system pulley is functioning. If the system is on and the blower is working, but the pulley remains still, a wire, fuse, or clutch may be bad. This may be a matter of checking over all the parts to see if an obvious problem exists. Many shops can offer some a/c system services, but some jobs, like replacing the compressor or clutch, may require more skill. If in doubt, it is always best to leave this type of work to the experts.

If a low refrigerant level is responsible for the AC problem, the system will need to be recharged. If this is a matter you believe you can handle, be sure not to overcharge the system. This can cause it to function poorly. Shops will often keep the system running and let out some refrigerant until the system is operating at its full capacity.

Remember, the slightest leak can cause low pressure and can affect the performance of a car’s AC system. It is best to make sure enough refrigerant is available first, then look for leaks. Make sure the system is on so you can determine whether all the parts are functioning as they should.

How to Replace the Capacitor of an Air Conditioner

If not functioning as per specifications, the capacitor of an air conditioner could lead to serious issues. In fact, this electrical component is invariably the cause of a motor or a fan malfunction. This is precisely the reason why knowing how to replace an AC capacitor could save considerable money and time. The actual procedure for maintenance is quite easy to perform but needs good manual skills and careful attention.

The following are the steps involved in the AC capacitor replacement process:

Local Regulations

One should get fairly acquainted with the local safety and health regulations pertaining to the maintenance and repair of electrical devices. Working with electricity is no child’s play and can be life-threatening. If one is not confident or does not really understand the whole process, then it’s wise to hire a professional.

Condenser

The protective gear must be on before trying to find the conditioner’s condenser. The condenser must be switched off, and a voltage tester must be used to check if there is any power.

Access Panel

The condenser’s access panel should then be located and opened by loosening the screws. For easy identification, the panel would usually have an electrical warning label attached.

New Capacitor Purchase

The capacitor is usually can-shaped with a sticker on it. Prior to purchasing a new capacitor, the technical data must be noted down, such as its load voltage, tolerance, capacitance, etc. The new capacitor purchased should have the same characteristics. It is not a problem if the new equipment is slightly different in size or shape – this would not have any negative impact on the conditioner’s operations. The thing that needs to be consistent is the actual performance.

Old Capacitor

If the old capacitor is studied closely, the wire connection patterns will become clear. These must be memorized or noted down as the new capacitor should go in the same way. People with a background in electricity can make use of the connection diagram available on the panel’s inner side.

New Capacitor Connection

All the wires leading to the old capacitor should be disconnected and attached to the same areas on the new one. For better execution and efficacy, the process should be carried out one wire at a time. In other words, one must go ahead with the other wire only when the first wire is disconnected from the old capacitor and attached to the new one. Once the wire connection is all properly done, the new capacitor can be mounted in its place. If the positioning is not stable, a metal mounting strap can be used to fix the position.

Testing Connections

Before setting things into place and going ahead with regular usage, the wires should be double-checked for proper placement. To check for loose wires, each wire must be slightly pulled. If necessary, the wires can be tightened up.

Checking Condenser

The condenser’s operations can be checked by switching the thermostat on. If there isn’t any problem, the condenser’s cover should be screwed back into its place. Once all set and done, the conditioner is ready to be used once again.

10 Tips To Maintain The Air Conditioner

Proper maintenance will make your air conditioner work more efficient at the same time, add years to the life of the system. However, not many people know how to go about it. Following are 10 tips for maintaining the air conditioner that you may find helpful.

The most expensive appliance in your home is your air conditioner. It can make your home unlivable in the hot summer months. You don’t want to wake up on a hot summer night or a cold winter night and realize that it’s not working. There’s an easy way to avoid this potential headache. Just like a car, your air conditioning system requires regular maintenance.

According to the council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, you need to have your system serviced at least annually. It’s a piece of machinery just like your car with moving parts that require service. You’ll sleep better at night knowing that you’ve taken care of the most expensive appliance in your home.

Observe annual check-up

Do not wait until when your system has a mechanical fault to call a technician. For your system to be able to operate properly and efficiently, it should be serviced from the onset of each cooling season by a qualified technician.

This service not only deals with a check-up of all equipment and major components but also gives room for the technician to recognize and terminate any existing concerns. This helps to prevent costly repairs that may occur if the concerns are ignored.

Ensure the unit is clean and clear

This is another vital step that every homeowner needs to consider to keep the air conditioner running efficiently. The best way to maintain the health of a unit is to keep the external air conditioning unit free from debris. Check regularly whether the condensing unit is free from plants and weeds. The unit needs to breathe properly, and this can only be possible if the sides of the unit have proper clearance.

Replace an older system

Undoubtedly, practicing regular maintenance checks by a qualified technician lengthens your air conditioner’s life expectancy, and it also cuts down costs of energy and air conditioner repair. However, if your system is more than 12 years old, you may need to have to consider replacing it with a new one. Yes, it is indeed possible to repair an older system, although it will be costly and the system will not operate efficiently.

Clear objects away from the grates, which may hinder a sufficient supply of air into each compartment.

Perform a thorough inspection of ducts in the crawl space or attic to see if you can detect any loose tapes, holes or any separate sections that might cause air leakage.

Minimize wasted energy and airflow restrictions by replacing your air handler filter on a monthly basis.

More caution is needed if you have pets such as cats and dogs in your home. This is because the fur tends to collect on filters as well as on the evaporator coil of your aircon. The evaporator coil needs to be cleaned routinely to remove accumulated dirt such as pet hair.

Check that the condensate line of your air conditioner is clear enough to permit liquid runoff.

Position the thermostat mode to cool to confirm if it’s working. In case you detect strange noises, do not hesitate to call the dealers for service.

Ensure the filter is dirt-free.

A dirty filter is prone to causing a breakdown of the system. The unit is unable to produce sufficient air flow if the air filter is clogged by particles such as dirt. This eventually results in making the system work harder due to lower air volume and thus slowly damages the unit.

AC Maintenance should be performed in what I call open-door weather. When you look to do maintenance during the peak part of the season, the demand part is when it’s 100° or the first hot day. In the winter time at the first cold night.

How To Identify Problems Of Your Air Conditioner And Get It Fixed

Apart from keeping the temperature of your room at comfortable levels during the summer season, the air conditioner also removes excessive humidity from the air inside your room, providing comfort to you and other members of your family, especially during the hot and humid summer season. Therefore, it becomes quite irritating when this gadget breaks down, particularly at the peak of summer. Before calling a professional HVAC technician, you can check a few things that might help you resolve the problem by yourself. This will save you time and money.

First, you should check whether the power is reaching your air conditioning unit. Turn off the machine, remove the plug from the power outlet, and use a tester to check whether there is any power in it. If there is no power in the socket, check if it has a blown fuse.

If the fuse is blown, replace it with a new one. If not, turn on the cooling unit and hear if a whistle like sound emanates from it. This sound signals that the compressor has started working. Within a few seconds, you should hear the whirring sound of the fan. This indicates that the machine is functioning properly. Wait a few minutes for the temperature inside the room to fall.

However, if you do not hear any whirring sound, or if there is no sound at all, chances are that the fan has stuck. If you have a windows mounted machine, turn off the power supply to the same. Now, remove its grille followed by the filter. This will expose the condenser coils and the fan. Switch on the power supply and turn on the air conditioning machine. Check the is the fan of air conditioner not cooling is stuck. If the fan does rotate or rotates unevenly, it is time to call the technician.

You should never tamper with an AC, especially if it is running. Doing the same is hazardous for your health and may even electrocute you. It is better to get in touch with a certified technician who specializes in repairing ACs. If the problem occurs within the warranty period, contact the store from where you purchased it and request them to send over a technician to your place.

You can also view the guidebook you got along with the cooling unit. It contains contact details of the manufacturer along with their toll free number. Get in touch with them and request them to rectify the problem. They will send their technician to fix the problem free of charge.

However, if the problem occurs after the expiry of the warranty period, you have to get in touch with a professional company whose personnel specialize in repairing air conditioners.

Search the net for such a company, located close to your place. Make sure that their technicians have a valid license and are trained by the air conditioner manufacturing plant to service their machines. The technician will arrive at your place, replace the faulty part with a genuine replacement, and check your AC for other problems as well.

It is always better to opt for a reputable HVAC company. They might charge more to fix your AC, but they do not use spurious parts and provide a guarantee as well.

Reasons To Buy A Portable Air Conditioner

Have you ever considered the amount of money and energy that is wasted when using central air conditioning? If you were to calculate the loss due to the fact that you are cooling rooms that may be empty, it would be staggering. Portable AC is a great way to stay cool without the waste that other cooling methods involve. The ease of portability of the individual air conditioner unit also makes sure that wherever you go, you remain cool and comfortable.

There are many other benefits to purchasing a portable air conditioner. For instance, there will be no more back-breaking maneuvers to install a heavy window unit. No damage to the window sills, and also, no more worry about how you’re going to make your strange-shaped window fit correctly in order to hold a thru the window air conditioner unit. Installation and maintenance of the portable ac units is fast and easy.

Just unpack it from the box and remove a few packaging materials, and you’re ready to go! No more hours of unnecessarily getting out tools and ladders and wasting an afternoon laboring on what will eventually be only a seasonal 4-month install.

Once the quick installation is completed, you can then use the device to “spot cool” any room or area.

Just as with all air conditioning systems, there are a variety of features from which to choose.

Portable AC Features

  • The unit is on wheels for easy transport within one room or into another.
  • Variety of British Thermal Units (BTU)
  • A large unit may possess as much as 14,000 BTUs which will cool about 500 square feet.
  • Three fan speeds (low, medium, and high)
  • Remote control for turning the unit off and on as well as air levels.
  • Solid Multi-year Manufacturer’s Warranties are available.

Please be aware that not all units offer the same functionality, so it is important to research what it is you want and need before your purchase.

The cost of a portable air conditioner unit can range from 400 dollars to over a thousand. This is money well spent when you remember the loss of money and energy used with central air and the ease of installation and portability that is not possible with either central or window ac units.

In a time when financial intelligence has never been more important, a portable ac unit is a smart and worthwhile investment. Imagine the comfort of being able to spot cool any room you are in without throwing money out the window.

Not only will your portable ac unit create the comfortable environment you desire, but it also does the work of dehumidifying. Therefore you keep the air not only cool but dry.

Another point to consider is that one of the great things about having a room portable ac unit is that it can be an addition to the central air conditioning and cooling system that you already have. In some homes, ductwork doesn’t extend to every area of the household, or perhaps a south-side facing room is warmer than other areas in the house.

I know where I grew up; my particular bedroom was always the warmest room in the house. A portable ac unit would have been perfect for an additional kick in the hot summer months.

The more you think about it, the more advantages there are to these small portable air conditioning units. Finding one online at retailers such as Amazon can really be an easy process and save 15 to 30%. In fact, the end of summer is the best time to purchase one of the current model year units as retailers and stores will be clearing out inventory for the upcoming holidays. Buying in the “off-season” is a great opportunity to pick up a good deal on these semi-expensive portable AC units.

5 Ways to Winterize Your Home and Save Money

There are some very useful and effective ways to get your home ready for cooler weather. Even if you live in a warm place where winter weather doesn’t affect how you heat your home, these ideas can help you save money on the electricity needed to run heat pumps and air conditioners.

Do an energy audit

You can find out about an energy audit by calling your utility company. These checks can help you find the places in your home that waste the most energy and money so you can fix them and save money.

As part of this energy audit, your thermostat will be checked to see if it is the right type and if it can be programmed. A simple audit can be done with a lit incense stick that sends out a stream of smoke.

Holding it up to doors and windows as you walk through your house will help you find places where the air is getting in and costing you money in higher energy bills.

Close doors and windows

Close curtains and blinds at night. Make sure all the doors are shut and sealed. This keeps cold night air from coming in and changing the temperature inside your home.

Also, you can buy kits to insulate your windows at most of the big stores. These kits come with clear plastic that goes around the window frame and is tightened with a hair dryer.

This keeps the air that shouldn’t be there out and keeps the air at the right temperature inside.

Use Caulking to Reseal

Use caulking on the outside of the windows to seal them and keep air from getting in. There are also things like weather stripping that can do the same thing. The only problem is that they are harder to put in place and can break down faster than caulk.

When the temperature changes, the exterior caulk expands and contracts, making a better seal. Look for other ways that air from outside is getting into your home. Most exterior doors have a seal built into the threshold that keeps air out when the door is shut. But over time, these can get worn out and stop working.

Replace them when you need to get back the benefit they gave you when they were new.

Close off fireplaces that aren’t being used

If you don’t use your fireplace, make sure the damper is closed, and you have glass doors in front of the opening to keep air from coming down the chimney.

Chimneys work well when there is a nice crackling fire that helps heat a house, but they can also let colder air from outside come in.

Install insulation

Many attics don’t have enough insulation to help keep heat inside a house. Or make sure the cool air stays where it should. Checking how much insulation is in your attic can help you decide if you need more or not.

The best insulation is the kind that is blown in because it can be blown into places that are hard to fill with the pink fiberglass insulation.

If you follow these five tips, you could save hundreds of dollars a year on your heating and cooling bills. If you haven’t prepared your home for winter yet, do it today and start saving money.