Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money

August 08, 2016

Myth 1: Hire your air conditioner technician on Craigslist.

The internet has given us a variety of choices to go to get an A/C system service technician, but proceed with caution because not all are created equal. While the Better Business Bureau gives you information on whether a contractor is accredited based on their business history and practices, other web pages are available to anyone who requests to post an ad. For instance, Craigslist lets anyone post an ad providing their services, despite whether or not they’re truly qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the proper training and background.

If you choose a business or individual without being able to confirm their qualifications and capability, it might end up costing you more in the long run. If the technician doesn’t have the skills to properly repair your particular AC equipment, you could end up needing another, more experienced company to repair their mistakes and end up paying multiple Trip Charges.

Myth 2: Working with a small business is better.

Hiring small businesses can be wonderful for some small fixes – it’s wonderful for the local business, good for the economy, and probably even good for your wallet. But use caution: small companies or one-person businesses could leave you in a lurch. If something goes wrong, they may simply disappear and not be there to rectify the situation, or they might not have the manpower to get you taken care of quickly, which is not what you want if your air conditioning system goes out in the dog days of summer.

Budgeting a little bit more for a bigger, more reputable and reliable company can come with advantages that help offer you more confidence, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, quality workmanship, a large certified team of technicians who give you service 24/7/365, and the assurance that they’ll be there in the future if you ever need them again.

 
Myth 3: You can use any type of refrigerant in your air conditioning system.

With the government ending the making of R-22, many families are observing the fee of refilling their air conditioner’s refrigerant increasing. It may seem like an easy fix to just substitute a different and less expensive refrigerant, but if an AC service technician gives you that advice, you likely want to call for a second opinion.

Manufacturers identify the exact refrigerant the system is designed for, and previous to 2010, it was typically R-22. Regardless of the extreme reduction of the production of R-22, those air conditioning systems are still designed for it, and substituting a different refrigerant may not only cause harm to your AC system, it could invalidate your warranty. A nullified warranty could cost you way more in future parts due to potential damage.

Myth 4: You don’t need annual AC maintenance.

Many people who are not currently having trouble with their AC may believe they don’t truly need yearly maintenance. It’s working fine, so why use the money on a tune-up, right? Don’t forget the fact that a yearly AC tune- up costs around $79 while repairs will set you back around $500. Not to mention, most manufacturers demand yearly maintenance to maintain your warranty, so disregarding your yearly tune-up could also mean foregoing your warranty, which means a big payout if your AC decides to die on the hottest day of the summer.

Myth 5: Researching the company isn’t necessary.

It’s important to ensure you do your research before picking an AC service company, especially if you feel a particular company is putting pressure on you. As we mentioned in Myth #1, some domains don’t demand a company to be qualified to advertise their services. You absolutely need to know their qualifications and history so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service twice.

Social media reviews, references from neighbors, and an a good accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all help you to understand the type of company you will be offering your business to and help you choose if they are ideal for you. Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google+ are all wonderful review sites to start your research process. And, don’t be afraid to ask for previous customer references. You could have to pay a pretty penny to your air conditioning contractor, so invest the time and research to ensure they are the best company for your AC.

Myth 6: It will cost more to turn your thermostat to a higher temperature while you’re not at home.

Over time, it will increase your costs to leave the thermostat at a colder temperature over the course of the day than to bump it up 10 degrees while you’re away. It usually will not take an outrageous amount of extra energy to get your home comfortable once you arrive, depending on variables of the home.

A programmable thermostat permits the temperature to be increased or decreased from a mobile device so you can easily adjust the temperature lower before arriving home, so your home is nice and comfy when you get home. This reduces your energy over the course of the day, as well as lowering your cooling bills.

nest thermostat

Myth 7: Constantly running ceiling fans will help lower the temperature in your home.

Fans help keep you cool, they don’t actually decrease the temperature of the home alone. In fact, fans (similar to refrigerators) actually raise the temperature in your home. The motor that is causing your fan to operate produces heat, which can add heat to the air in your family’s home. A good ceiling fan could help level the temperature of your room and may help to cool air by circulating, but if there isn’t a person beneath the fan to feel the breeze, all it’s doing is wasting energy and money, especially if the AC is already running. So keep ceiling fans off when there is no one in the room and extra air circulation is not needed.

Myth 8: It doesn’t matter where the thermostat is installed.

Thermostats read the temperature around it to choose whether it needs to activate the air conditioner to cool down your home. Putting a thermostat in your bedroom will only ensure that bedroom cools to the temperature that the thermostat is set to. Once the bedroom is cooled, the AC will turn off and the remaining floor or home may be a lot warmer. If the thermostat is put near a sunny window or an appliance, it may always think the temperature is much higher than the home really is and keep running your system, increasing your cooling bills.

thermostat

Myth 9: Excessively lowering your thermostat will help it cool more speedily.

Turning your air down lower may only make your air conditioner run longer, it won’t get cooler any faster. If your thermostat is set to 77, but you really would be more comfortable at 75, then put it at 75 and it will work until it gets to that temperature. Lowering the thermostat to 73 won’t make it get to 75 any faster, and it will make your system run longer, costing you money and energy.

Myth 10: It’s fine to replace your air filter once every twelve months.

Depending on the health issues for the people living in the home, and the style of air filter you have for your air conditioner, your air filter may need to be swapped out as often as every four weeks. Not changing the air filter often enough not only means for your AC to work harder and decrease efficiency, it could also exacerbate respiratory ailments like common allergy symptoms.

Call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning today for more information about your air conditioning system or to set-up your free in-home consultation.

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