Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money

August 08, 2016

Myth 1: Get your air conditioner technician on Craigslist.

The World Wide Web has given us a variety of places to go to look for an air conditioning service technician, but beware because not all are comparable. While the Better Business Bureau gives you information on whether a company is accredited and, if so, a letter grade based on their organization’s history and practices, other websites are available to anyone who wants to post an ad. For example, Craigslist allows anyone to post an ad promoting their services, not requiring them to verify whether or not they’re really qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the actual training and background.

If you decide on a business or individual without having the ability to confirm their qualifications and expertise, it may end up costing you more in the long run. If the technician doesn’t know how to properly fix your specific air conditioner, you may end up needing a different, more experienced company to repair their mistakes and end up paying multiple Trip Charges.

Myth 2: Choosing a small business is better.

Hiring small businesses can be good for some small fixes – it’s great for the local business, good for the economy, and maybe even wonderful for your bank account. But be careful: small companies or one-person companies could let you down. If something backfires, they may simply disappear and not be available to repair it, or they might not have the resources to get you taken care of quickly, which is not what you want if your air conditioning system breaks down in the dog days of summer.

Paying a little bit more for a larger, more reputable and reliable company can come with benefits that help give you more peace of mind, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, excellent workmanship, a large certified team of servicemen and women who provide you service 24/7/365, and the peace of mind that they’ll be available in the future if you ever need them again.

Myth 3: It’s okay to use any type of refrigerant in your air conditioner.

With the government putting an end to the manufacturing of R-22, many homeowners are seeing the cost of refilling their air conditioning system’s refrigerant going up. It may seem like an easy fix to just replace your R-22 with a different and lower cost refrigerant, but if an AC service technician advises you to do that, you probably want to find a second opinion.

Manufacturers detail the exact refrigerant the equipment is developed for, and before 2010, it was usually R-22. Despite the extreme decrease of the production of R-22, those air conditioners are still designed for it, and substituting a different refrigerant may not only cause damage to your AC system, it could invalidate your warranty. A nullified warranty might cost you hundreds or thousands more in future parts due to potential damage.

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

Many people who aren’t having trouble with their air conditioner may think they don’t actually need routine maintenance. It’s operating fine, so why spend the money on a tune-up, right? Well there’s the fact that a yearly AC tune- up is priced around $79 while repairs will cost you around $500. Not to mention, most manufacturers demand yearly maintenance to continue your warranty, so disregarding your annual tune-up could cause you to lose your warranty, resulting in a big payout if your AC decides to go out on the hottest day of the season.

Myth 5: Learning about the business isn’t necessary.

It’s important to check that you do your homework before deciding on an AC service company, especially if you feel a particular company is pressuring you. As we mentioned in Myth #1, some sites don’t demand a contractor to be qualified to place an ad for their services. You absolutely need to know who you’re working with so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service twice.

Website reviews, references from neighbors, and an a good accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all assure you of the type of company you will be offering your business to and help you decide if they are right for you. Google+, Angie’s List, and the BBB are all wonderful places to start your homework. And, don’t be shy to ask for prior customer testimonials. You might have to pay a pretty penny to your AC contractor, so invest some time and research to confirm they are the ideal company for your home.

Myth 6: It costs more to turn your thermostat higher while you’re away from home.

Long-term, it will increase your bills to leave the thermostat at a colder temperature over the course of the day than to bump it up 10 degrees while you are away from your home. It normally will not require an outrageous amount of more energy to get your home comfortable once you enter, depending on your home.

A programmable thermostat allows for the temperature to be adjusted from a tablet or phone so you can simply adjust the temperature back down before returning home, so your home is cool and comfortable when you enter. This decreases your energy during the day, as well as reducing your cooling bills.

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

Fans help cool people, they don’t really lower the temperature of the home alone. In fact, fans (like refrigerators) actually increase the temperature in your home. The motor that is forcing your fan to run creates heat, which can add heat to the air in your home. An efficient ceiling fan does help level the temperature of your room and may help to cool air by circulating, but if nobody is beneath the fan to feel the cool air, all it’s doing is squandering energy and money, especially if the air conditioner is already on. So turn off ceiling fans when there is nobody in the room and extra air circulation is unnecessary.

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

Thermostats measure the temperature surrounding it to decide whether it needs to start up the air conditioning system to cool the home. Installing a thermostat in your bedroom will only make sure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is adjusted to. Once your bedroom is cooled, the air conditioner will shut off and the remainder of the floor or home might be quite a bit warmer. If the thermostat is put near a well-lit window or an appliance, it may continuously read the temperature as being much higher than the living area really is and continuously run your air conditioner, upping your cooling bills.

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

Lowering your air excessively may only make your air conditioner work longer, it won’t get to a colder temperature any faster. If your thermostat is set on 77, but you really want it to be 75, then set it to 75 and it will run until it cools to that temperature. Decreasing the thermostat to 73 won’t make it cool to 75 any faster, and it will make your system run longer, squandering money and energy.

Myth 10: It’s acceptable to swap out your air filter annually.

Depending on respiratory or allergy issues for the residents of the home, and the style of air filter you have for your air conditioner, your air filter might need to be changed as often as every four weeks. Skipping the replacement of the air filter often enough not only causes your air conditioner to work harder and reduce efficiency, it could also exacerbate respiratory illnesses like common allergy symptoms.

Call Church Services today for more information about your air conditioner or to set-up your no-charge in-home consultation.

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