Like any 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 heat.
To make sure you don't lose your cool once the weather heats up, we asked the experts at Customer Reports and air conditioner pros to recognize the most typical issues that emerge with window and central air conditioning conditioners. They highlighted 8 issues to repair now. Plus, you'll discover our list of leading a/c unit for little, medium, and large rooms, below.
The No. 1 problem affects both window units and main Air Conditioner systems, and-- we're delighted 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 performance and minimizing the capability to efficiently cool the air. If you haven't cleaned up the filter in your window or portable air conditioning system 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 three 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 regularly. "When we get calls about central air 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 Air Conditioner remains in a window that gets direct sunshine in the heat of the day, it'll have to work harder to cool your space. If you have an option, move it to a shadier area. If not, keep your shades 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.
" A lot 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 may imply that your system 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 home 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, routinely 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 outside compressor for central air conditioning needs appropriate 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 check all the moving parts, in addition to the refrigerant, and recharge the system if essential.
Required a New AC?
If your space a/c unit is beyond repair, you can discover one that did well in our tests for as little as around $200 for a little unit and upwards of $800 for a big one. Ensure you match the size of the air Click here for more info conditioning unit 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 full a/c ratings.