Like any home appliance, air conditioners need a little TLC to deliver optimal performance. It's the ACs that haven't been kept in top-notch condition that tend to struggle most in hot weather.
To make sure you don't lose your cool once the weather warms up, we asked the experts at Customer Reports and air conditioner pros to identify the most typical issues that emerge with window and main air conditioners. They highlighted 8 issues to repair now. Plus, you'll discover our list of leading a/c unit for little, medium, and large rooms, below.
The No. 1 problem affects both window units and main Air Conditioner systems, and-- we enjoy to report-- it's the most convenient to repair. Here are 8 concerns to ask that will help you keep your Air Conditioning at peak performance all summer long.
1. Is the Filter Dirty?
No matter which type of air conditioner you have, a clogged filter limits airflow, reducing performance and lowering the capability to efficiently cool the air. If you haven't cleaned the filter in your window or portable air conditioning unit recently, make sure you do and after that examine it occasionally. For main Air Conditioning systems, inspect the filter manufacturer's recommendation for when to switch in a brand-new one. In CR's tests, filters last anywhere from 3 to 12 months.
Just bear in mind that if your system is running constantly or if you have pets, you will require to alter your filters more frequently. "When we get calls about central air conditioning units that aren't working well, nine times out of 10 it's because of an unclean filter," states Stewart Unsdorfer, owner of Central Heating & A/c in Cleveland.
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2. Is It Too Sunny Inside?
If your window AC remains in a window that gets direct sunshine in the heat of the day, it'll need to work harder to cool your space. If you have an option, move it to a shadier area. If not, keep your tones and curtains drawn throughout the day to block the sun and avoid it from warming up your house.
3. Is Warm Air Leaking In? Check the seals around your window AC to make certain hot air isn't getting in (or cold air isn't permeating out). Reseal around your unit with weather stripping if essential.
" A lot of brand-new window units come with insulation panels to position over the plastic adjustable side panels," states Chris Regan, CR's senior a/c unit tester. "But to maximize performance, you'll still require to utilize weather stripping around the border of the system. And always use the maker's setup and safety hardware."
4. Is Your Window AC Vibrating? Air conditioners make a lot of sound, including from the whir of the fan and the noise of the compressor biking on and off. These noises are normal. However if you hear a vibrating sound, it may mean that your system was set up incorrectly. Make sure it's sitting firmly in the window and evaluate the installation instructions in your owner's handbook to verify that no steps were missed out on.
Central A/C Checklist
5. Is the Thermostat on the Right Setting?
With a smart or programmable thermostat, you can more quickly manage the temperature in your house so that it's comfy when you're there and a bit warmer when you're not. If the temperature appears off, Article source ensure the thermostat isn't exposed to direct sunlight, which might trigger it to register the incorrect temperature level.
6. Are the Registers Dirty or Blocked?
If you have a forced-air cooling and heating system, regularly vacuum the signs up to eliminate any dust accumulation. Make certain that furnishings and other objects aren't obstructing the air flow through your registers.
7. Are Plants Crowding the Compressor?
The outside compressor for main air needs adequate air flow to work correctly, so make sure there's at least 2 to 3 feet of area between the compressor and any plants or structures. There should likewise be 5 feet of clearance between the top of the unit and any trees above.
8. Did You Keep In Mind the Annual Examination? An assessment by a HEATING AND COOLING (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) professional can catch any serious issues before they worsen and leave you hot and troubled. The specialist will examine all the moving parts, in addition to the refrigerant, and recharge the system if essential.
Required a New AC?
If your space a/c unit is beyond repair, you can discover one that did well in our tests for just around $200 for a little unit and upwards of $800 for a big one. Ensure you match the size of the air conditioner to the space it's implied to cool. Listed below, we note models in each size that carried out well in CR's tests. You can find more in our complete a/c unit ratings.