Myth 1: Get your air conditioner technician on Craigslist.
The interweb has given us a variety of places to go to get an A/C system service technician, but beware because not all are comparable. While the Better Business Bureau displays information on whether a business is accredited and, if so, a letter grade determined by their business history and practices, other web pages are open to anyone who requests to post an ad. For instance, Craigslist will allow anyone to post an ad promoting their services, not requiring them to verify whether or not they’re truly qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the proper training and background.
If you choose a business or individual without having the ability to identify their qualifications and capability, it may end up costing you more ultimately. If the technician doesn’t have the qualifications to properly fix your specific AC equipment, you may end up needing another, more experienced contractor to correct their mistakes and it could end up costing you multiple Trip Charges.
Myth 2: Working with a small business is better.
Hiring small businesses can be good for some minor home services – it’s wonderful for the local business, good for the economy, and likely even great for your bank account. But beware: small operations or one-person businesses could leave you in a lurch. If something goes wrong, they may conveniently disappear and not be available to rectify the situation, or they might not have the workforce to get to you quickly, which is not what you want if your air conditioning system goes out in the dog days of summer.
Budgeting a little bit more for a sizable, more established and reliable company can come with perks that help give you more confidence, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, expert workmanship, a large certified team of technicians who give you service 24/7/365, and the confidence that they’ll be available if you need them again.
Myth 3: It’s okay to use any type of refrigerant in your air conditioner.
With the government ending the production of R-22, many homeowners are noticing the price of refilling their air conditioner’s refrigerant rising. It may sound like an easy fix to just substitute a different and lower cost refrigerant, but if an AC service technician gives you that advice, you probably want to get a second opinion.
Manufacturers specify the exact refrigerant the equipment is produced for, and prior to 2010, it was typically R-22. Although there is extreme reduction of the production of R-22, those AC systems are still designed for it, and replacing R-22 with a different refrigerant may not only cause destruction to your AC system, it could nullify your warranty. An invalidated warranty may cost you a lot more in future parts due to potential damage.
Myth 4: You don’t need annual air conditioning maintenance.
Most people who aren’t having trouble with their AC may think they don’t really need yearly maintenance. It’s working fine, so why spend the money on a tune-up, right? Except for the fact that a yearly AC tune- up costs around $79 while repairs will set you back around $500. Also, most manufacturers demand yearly maintenance to continue your warranty, so skipping your annual tune-up could cause you to lose your warranty, which means a large payout if your air conditioning system decides to die on the hottest day of the summer.
Myth 5: Researching the contractor isn’t valuable.
It’s critical to check that you do your homework before deciding on an air conditioner service business, especially if you feel a particular company is putting pressure on you. As we discussed in Myth #1, some domains don’t demand a person to be qualified to advertise their services. It’s important to know what you’re getting into so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service again.
Social media reviews, referrals from neighbors, and an a great accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all assure you of the type of business you will be offering your business to and help you figure out if they are best for you. Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google+ are all wonderful websites to start your homework. Remember, don’t be afraid to ask for previous customer references. You may have to invest your money with your air conditioning contractor, so invest a little time and research to confirm they are the right company for your AC.
Myth 6: It costs you more to turn your thermostat higher while you’re not at home.
Over time, it will increase your bills to leave the thermostat at a lower temperature all through the day than to increase it 10 degrees while you are away from your home. It normally will not take an exorbitant amount of more energy to get your home comfortable once you return, depending on your home.
A programmable thermostat permits the temperature to be changed from a mobile device so you can simply adjust the temperature back down before arriving home, so your home is cool and comfortable when you enter. This decreases your energy throughout the day, as well as lowering your cooling bills.
Myth 7: Always running ceiling fans will help lower the temperature in your home.
Fans help cool people, they don’t truly lower the temperature of the home alone. In fact, fans (similar to refrigerators) actually heat up homes. The motor that is making your fan operate produces heat, which can put heat in the air in your home. An efficient ceiling fan can help level the temperature of your room and may help to cool air by circulating, but if there isn’t a person under the fan to feel cool, all it’s doing is wasting energy and money, especially if the air conditioner is already working. So turn off ceiling fans when there is nobody in the room and extra air circulation is unneeded.
Myth 8: It doesn’t matter where the thermostat is installed.
Thermostats read the temperature near it to decide whether it needs to start up the air conditioner to cool down your home. Placing a thermostat in your bedroom will only make sure that bedroom cools to the temperature that the thermostat is adjusted to. Once the bedroom is cooled, the AC will shut off and the rest of the floor or home might be much warmer. If the thermostat is placed near a well-lit window or an appliance, it may continuously think the temperature is much higher than the living area actually is and constantly run your AC, increasing your utility bills.
Myth 9: Turning your thermostat down much lower will help it cool more speedily.
Lowering your air excessively may only make your air conditioning system run longer, it won’t get to a colder temperature any faster. If your thermostat is says 77, but you really would be more comfortable at 75, then set it to 75 and it will kick on until it reaches that temperature. Lowering the thermostat to 73 won’t make it cool to 75 any faster, and it will cause your system to run long, squandering money and energy.
Myth 10: It’s acceptable to change your air filter once a year.
Depending on the health conditions of the people living in the home, and the kind of air filter you use for your AC, your air filter might need to be changed as often as every four weeks. Failure to change the air filter often enough not only means for your air conditioning system to work harder and reduce efficiency, it could also irritate respiratory conditions like common allergy symptoms.
Call Comfort Masters Service Experts today to inquire about your air conditioning system or to set-up your no-charge in-home consultation.