Air Conditioning Maintenance Tips:
I created this list from my experience. Remember I am a real estate Broker, not an AC service guy or anything – so this is just a normal (maybe not so normal) guys opinion from past experiences.
It is definitley time to have the Air Conditioning checked. There are lots of companies out there. I personally like Roman Schreck (706) 968-8493. A real trustworthy guy that has always been straight with me.
Before we get into your A/C heatpump, I want to bring up A/C window units. Make sure you check them prior to installing them in your window. If they have BLACK stuff in the vents it could be MOLD, even black mold (the bad stuff). If it looks really bad, you are better off going to buy a new one, or you may be paying for doctor visits instead. I have recently read where you are supposed to clean these units before putting them away for the winter, but if you have one, that is harder than it seems. I recommend going to http://www.YouTube.com and search for A/C window unit cleaning, you will find help there.
Now to the tips.
1. Regularly clean your air filters, supply vents and return grills. Dust and dirt cause your heating equipment to work harder. That means higher energy bills.
2. You must check the ducts under the house. If you open a crawl space door and it is cool under there you may have a problem. But even if it isn’t cool under there go check the ducts for leaks. Crawl or walk along the whole duct system feeling for air streams (make sure the AC is on) and try and find holes. Even the smallest hole will cause a terrible loss of cool air and put warm air in its place. If you find holes use the proper sealant to fix that hole. This article says NOT to use duct tape especially in an attic because under extremem heat it melts. It seems like duct take would be ok in a crawl space or basement. But regardless of what you use to fix the hole – make sure you don’t have any squeezing or pinching of the duct.
3. Speaking of squeezing or pinching. This is a bad problem especially if a home has a second floor. I have seen where the second floor was never cool even with the air on high. Turns out the issue was when they ran the vents to the second floor they tried to squeeze them through holes that were smaller than the duct – that creating a pinch point where air was not flowing as it was supposed to. If those ducts are in the walls and not accessible, the only way you would know if you have a problem is by having the cool air coming out of the vents checked. I know home inspectors do this kind of thing, and of course AC companies must as well. So if you are having problems with the upstairs of your home not being cooled properly, you may want to have that checked out. If you have a basement and the vents are visible – make sure you check them carefully, look for leaks and pinches.
4. Make sure you have enough vents open in the house. AC units are made to push a certain amount of air and by closing vents the system will not work efficiently. Talk with your AC company for more information on this.
5. Make sure your outside unit is not too close to the house or overgrown with bushes or weeds. Your unit needs to breathe.
6. You should have your unit checked yearly to make sure your system is working properly and the freon levels are normal. Freon is the coolant used in the ac system.
7. Timing – when to have the AC checked? Don’t wait until the summer to have your system checked. The best time of year would be Early spring when you have the occasional warn day. This way you can pick a day according to your schedule and not the AC Professionals, because in the summer – if he is any good he will be booked solid.
8. If the AC company finds problems – make sure you ask for a quote in writing and do not committ to that company on the spot. Then get at least two more quotes. AND NEVER TELL THE OTHER COMPANIES WHAT QUOTES YOU HAVE ALREADY. You can – and I suggest you do – tell them you are getting multiple quotes.
9. And if you did not like the company who maintained your AC unit the previous year – don’t call them back. Ask your friends or a local Real Estate Agent for recommendations.
10. Lastly – if you have a home that does not keep the home cool because it is in the sun for a good part of the day; try covering the windows with either heavy curtains or insulation when the sun is on those windows. It works! And this tip goes for new homes as well as the older homes.
Education: Click here to learn about Heat Pumps. This is the main source of Heating & AC in Habersham County & Northeast Georgia. Especially in the low to medium priced NON-Custom homes.
Keep Kool and visit this site often. Have a great day. Ken