Like any device, ac system need a little TLC to deliver ideal performance. It's the A/cs that have not been kept in first-class condition that tend to have a hard time most in heat.
To ensure you do not lose your cool when the weather warms up, we asked the professionals at Consumer Reports and ac system pros to determine the most common problems that appear with window and central air conditioners. They highlighted eight problems to troubleshoot now. Plus, you'll find our list of top air conditioners for little, medium, and big spaces, listed below.
The No. 1 issue impacts both window systems and central Air Conditioning systems, and-- we enjoy to report-- it's the easiest to fix. Here are eight questions to ask that will assist you keep your Air Conditioner at peak efficiency all summer season long.
1. Is the Filter Dirty?
No matter which kind of a/c unit you have, a stopped up filter limits airflow, decreasing efficiency and reducing the ability to successfully cool the air. If you have not cleaned up the filter in your window or portable a/c just recently, ensure you do and then check it periodically. For central Air Conditioner systems, examine the filter producer's recommendation for when to swap in a new one. In CR's tests, filters last anywhere from three to 12 months.
Simply remember that if your system is running continuously or if you have animals, you will need to change your filters more frequently. "When we get calls about main air systems that aren't working well, 9 times out of 10 it's since of a filthy filter," says Stewart Unsdorfer, owner of Central Heating & Air Conditioning in Cleveland.
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2. Is It Too Sunny Within?
If your window A/C is in a window that gets direct sunlight in the heat of the day, it'll have to work more difficult to cool your area. If you have an option, move it to a shadier spot. If not, keep your shades and drapes drawn throughout the day to obstruct the sun and prevent it from heating up your house.
3. Is Warm Air Leaking In? Examine the seals around your window A/C to ensure hot air isn't getting in (or cold air isn't seeping out). Reseal around your unit with weather condition removing if needed.
" Many new window systems feature insulation panels to put over the plastic adjustable side panels," says Chris Regan, CR's senior air conditioning unit tester. "But to optimize performance, you'll still need to use weather removing around the boundary of the unit. And always utilize the producer's installation and safety hardware."
4. Is Your Window Air Conditioner Vibrating? A/c make lots of noise, 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 noise, it may suggest that your system was installed incorrectly. Make certain it's sitting firmly in the window and evaluate the installation guidelines 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 control 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, ensure the thermostat isn't exposed to direct Click for source 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 buildup. Make certain that furnishings and other objects aren't obstructing the air flow through your registers.
7. Are Plants Crowding the Compressor?
The outdoor 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 Remember the Yearly Examination? An evaluation by a HVAC (heating, ventilation, and cooling) specialist can catch any severe problems prior to they get even worse and leave you hot and bothered. The professional will inspect all the moving parts, as well as the refrigerant, and charge the system if needed.
Need a New Air Conditioner?
If your room air conditioner is beyond repair work, you can find one that did well in our tests for as low as around $200 for a small system and upwards of $800 for a large one. Make sure you match the size of the a/c to the space it's implied to cool. 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.