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 specialists at Customer Reports and a/c pros to identify the most typical problems that crop up with window and central air conditioning conditioners. They highlighted eight issues to troubleshoot now. Plus, you'll discover our list of top a/c unit for small, medium, and large rooms, below.
The No. 1 problem affects both window systems and main Air Conditioner systems, and-- we more than happy 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 air flow, reducing effectiveness and minimizing the ability to efficiently cool the air. If you haven't cleaned the filter in your window or portable air conditioner just recently, make certain you do and after that inspect it regularly. For central Air Conditioning systems, check the filter manufacturer's suggestion for when to switch in a brand-new one. In CR's tests, filters last anywhere from 3 to 12 months.
Just keep in mind that if your system is running constantly or if you have family 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 due to the fact that 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 during the day to obstruct 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.
" The majority 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 efficiency, 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 sound of the compressor biking on and off. These sounds are normal. But if you hear a vibrating sound, it might imply that your unit was set up incorrectly. Make sure it's sitting firmly in the window and examine the installation instructions in your owner's handbook to verify that no steps were missed.
Central Air Conditioner List
5. Is the Thermostat on the Right Setting?
With a smart or programmable thermostat, you can more easily manage the temperature in your house so that it's comfy when you exist and a bit warmer when you're not. If the temperature appears off, make certain the thermostat isn't exposed to direct sunlight, which may trigger it to register the wrong temperature level.
6. Are the Registers Dirty or Blocked?
If you have a forced-air cooling and heating system, regularly vacuum the registers to get rid of any dust buildup. Make sure that furnishings and other items aren't blocking the air flow through your signs up.
7. Are Plants Crowding the Compressor?
The outdoor compressor for main air requires adequate air flow to work properly, so make sure there's at least 2 to 3 feet of area in between the compressor and any plants or structures. There ought to likewise be 5 feet of clearance in between the top of the unit and any trees above.
8. Did You Keep In Mind the Yearly Checkup? An examination by a HEATING AND COOLING (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) professional can capture any serious issues prior to they worsen and leave you hot and troubled. The service technician will check all the moving parts, along with the refrigerant, and charge the system if necessary.
Required a New Air Conditioning?
If your room a/c is beyond repair, you can find one that succeeded in our tests for as little as around $200 for a little Click for source unit and upwards of $800 for a large one. Make certain you match the size of the ac system to the room it's indicated to cool. Below, we note models in each size that performed well in CR's tests. You can discover more in our full air conditioning system scores.