Like any appliance, a/c unit need a little TLC to deliver ideal efficiency. It's the A/cs that have not been kept in first-class condition that tend to struggle most in hot weather.
To ensure you don't lose your cool when the weather warms up, we asked the experts at Consumer Reports and air conditioning unit pros to identify the most common problems that appear with window and central air conditioning conditioners. They highlighted eight problems to repair now. Plus, you'll discover our list of leading air conditioning system for little, medium, and big spaces, listed below.
The No. 1 issue affects both window units and central AC systems, and-- we more than happy to report-- it's the easiest to fix. Here are 8 concerns to ask that will assist you keep your A/C at peak efficiency all summertime long.
1. Is the Filter Dirty?
No matter which type of ac system you have, a blocked filter restricts airflow, decreasing performance and lowering the capability to successfully cool the air. If you have not cleaned the filter in your window or portable ac system recently, make sure you do and then examine it occasionally. For main A/C systems, inspect the filter manufacturer's recommendation for when to swap in a brand-new one. In CR's tests, filters last anywhere from 3 to 12 months.
Simply bear in mind that if your system is running constantly or if you have pets, you will need to alter your filters more typically. "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 during 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 system with weather stripping if essential.
" A lot of ac check Humble brand-new window systems come with insulation panels to position over the plastic adjustable side panels," states Chris Regan, CR's senior ac system tester. "However to maximize effectiveness, 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 may imply 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 home so that it's comfy when you're there and a bit warmer when you're not. If the temperature appears off, ensure the thermostat isn't exposed to direct sunlight, which might 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 signs up to eliminate any dust buildup. Make certain that furnishings and other items aren't blocking the air flow through your registers.
7. Are Plants Crowding the Compressor?
The outdoor compressor for central air conditioning 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 Checkup? An assessment by a HEATING AND COOLING (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) professional can catch any serious issues before they become worse 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 ac system 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 list models in each size that carried out well in CR's tests. You can find more in our complete ac system ratings.