Like any device, ac system need a little TLC to deliver ideal performance. It's the Air conditionings that haven't been kept in first-class condition that tend to struggle most in hot weather.
To ensure you don't lose your cool once the weather warms up, we asked the experts at Consumer Reports and air conditioning unit pros to identify the most common problems that crop up with window and central air conditioners. They highlighted 8 issues to repair now. Plus, you'll discover our list of leading a/c for little, medium, and big spaces, below.
The No. 1 problem affects both window units and central AC systems, and-- we enjoy to report-- it's the most convenient to repair. Here are 8 concerns to ask that will assist you keep your A/C at peak performance all summertime long.
1. Is the Filter Dirty?
No matter which type of air conditioning unit you have, a clogged filter restricts airflow, reducing performance and minimizing the capability to efficiently cool the air. If you haven't cleaned the filter in your window or portable air conditioning unit recently, make certain you do and after that examine it regularly. For main Air Conditioning systems, check the filter manufacturer's recommendation for when to switch in a brand-new one. In CR's tests, filters last anywhere from 3 to 12 months.
Just keep in mind that if your system is running constantly or if you have pets, you will require to alter your filters more frequently. "When we get calls about central air conditioning 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.
What Matters to You Matters to Us
We test thousands of items so you can develop your finest home.
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 have 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 throughout the day to obstruct the sun here 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 feature insulation panels to position over the plastic adjustable side panels," states Chris Regan, CR's senior ac system tester. "But to maximize performance, you'll still require to use weather removing around the border of the unit. And always utilize the maker's setup and safety hardware."
4. Is Your Window AC Vibrating? Air conditioning system 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 sound, it may mean 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 level appears off, ensure the thermostat isn't exposed to direct sunlight, which might cause it to register the incorrect temperature level.
6. Are the Registers Dirty or Blocked?
If you have a forced-air heating and cooling system, frequently vacuum the signs up to eliminate any dust buildup. Make certain that furniture and other objects aren't obstructing the airflow through your registers.
7. Are Plants Crowding the Compressor?
The outside compressor for main air needs appropriate air flow to work correctly, so make certain there's at least 2 to 3 feet of area between the compressor and any plants or structures. There need to likewise be 5 feet of clearance between the top of the system and any trees above.
8. Did You Keep In Mind the Annual Examination? An assessment by a HVAC (heating, ventilation, and cooling) service technician can catch any severe problems before they worsen and leave you hot and bothered. The technician will examine all the moving parts, in addition to the refrigerant, and recharge the system if needed.
Need a New Air Conditioner?
If your space air conditioning unit is beyond repair work, you can discover one that did well in our tests for just around $200 for a small system and upwards of $800 for a big one. Make sure you match the size of the air conditioning system to the room it's meant to cool. Listed below, we list designs in each size that performed well in CR's tests. You can find more in our complete air conditioning unit rankings.