Myth 1: Hire your air conditioner technician on Craigslist.
The World Wide Web has given us a variety of options to go to look for an A/C system service technician, but beware because not all are comparable. While the Better Business Bureau displays information on whether a contractor is accredited and, if so, a letter grade based on their business history and practices, other sites are open to anyone who wants to post an ad. For example, Craigslist will let anyone post an ad providing their services, regardless of whether or not they’re actually qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the proper training and experience.
If you decide on a contractor or individual without being able to verify their qualifications and competence, it may end up costing you more over time. If the serviceman or woman doesn’t have the knowledge to properly service your actual air conditioner, you may end up needing a different, more experienced contractor to repair their mistakes and it could cost you multiple service charges.
Myth 2: Hiring a small business is better.
Working with small businesses can be wonderful for some minor home services – it’s great for the local business, wonderful for the economy, and probably even wonderful for your bank account. But use caution: small businesses or one-person companies could leave you in a lurch. If something goes wrong, they may merely disappear and not be there to rectify the situation, or they could not have the manpower to get to you quickly, which is bad news if your AC breaks down in the heat of the summer.
Budgeting a little bit more for a sizable, more established and reliable company can come with perks that help give you more peace of mind, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, excellent workmanship, a large certified team of technicians who give you service 24/7/365, and the assurance that they’ll be a call away if you ever require their services.
Myth 3: It’s okay to use any type of refrigerant in your AC.
With the government stopping the manufacturing of R-22, many families are noticing the cost of refilling their air conditioning system’s refrigerant rising. It may sound like an easy fix to just replace your R-22 with a different and less expensive refrigerant, but if an air conditioner service technician recommends this, you probably want to get a second opinion.
Manufacturers detail the exact refrigerant the equipment is designed for, and previous to 2010, it was commonly R-22. Despite the extreme reduction of the production of R-22, those air conditioners are still designed for it, and replacing R-22 with a different refrigerant may not only cause damage to your air conditioning equipment, it could void your warranty. An invalidated warranty might cost you way more in future parts due to possible damage.
Myth 4: You don’t need yearly air conditioning maintenance.
Most people who are not currently having trouble with their air conditioner may think they don’t truly need annual maintenance. It’s running fine, so why waste the money on a tune-up, right? Except for the fact that a routine AC tune- up is priced around $79 while repairs will set you back around $500. Not to mention, most manufacturers require routine maintenance to continue your warranty, so skipping your annual tune-up could cost you your warranty, resulting in a huge payout if your AC decides to breakdown on the hottest day of the season.
Myth 5: Finding out about the business isn’t necessary.
It’s important to make sure you do your due diligence 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 require a contractor to be qualified to place an ad for their services. It’s important to know their qualifications and history so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service twice.
Website reviews, references from neighbors, and an a high accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all help you to understand the type of business you will be giving your business to and help you decide if they are ideal for you. Angie’s List, Google+, and Yelp are all good websites to start your research process. Also, don’t be scared to ask for prior customer testimonials. You may have to pay a pretty penny to your air conditioning technician, so invest some time and research to confirm they are the ideal company for your home.
Myth 6: It will cost more to turn your thermostat up while you’re away from home.
Over time, it will increase your bills to leave the thermostat at a lower temperature all through the day than to bump it up 10 degrees while you’re away. It usually will not take an excessive amount of extra energy to cool your home once you enter, depending on your home.
A programmable thermostat lets the temperature to be adjusted from a mobile device so you can easily adjust the temperature back down before coming home, so your home is cool and comfortable when you arrive. This decreases your energy throughout the day, as well as reducing your cooling bills.
Myth 7: Always running ceiling fans will help cool your home.
Fans help keep you cool, they don’t actually decrease the temperature of the home alone. In fact, fans (like refrigerators) actually raise the temperature in your home. The motor that is making your fan operate generates heat, which can put heat in the air in your family’s home. An efficient ceiling fan can help level the temperature of the room and may contribute to cooling air by circulating, but if there isn’t anyone under the fan to feel cool, all it’s doing is wasting energy and money, especially if the AC is already running. So turn off ceiling fans when there is no one in the room and extra air circulation is unneeded.
Myth 8: Where the thermostat is installed doesn’t matter.
Thermostats use the temperature surrounding it to decide whether it needs to turn on the air conditioning system to cool your home. Putting a thermostat in the bedroom will only make sure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is set to. Once your bedroom is cooled, the system will turn off and the rest of the floor or home might be a lot warmer. If the thermostat is put near a well-lit window or an appliance, it could continuously read the temperature as being much higher than the rest of the home truly is and keep running your AC, increasing your utility bills.
Myth 9: Turning your thermostat down much lower will help it cool more quickly.
Turning your air down lower may only make your air conditioner run longer, it won’t get colder any faster. If your thermostat is set on 77, but you really want it to be 75, then put it at 75 and it will kick on until it reaches that temperature. Decreasing the thermostat to 73 won’t make it lower to 75 any faster, and it will make your system run longer, wasting money and energy.
Myth 10: It’s fine to replace your air filter once a year.
Depending on respiratory or allergy issues for the residents of 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 30 days. Failure to change the air filter often enough not only makes your air conditioning system to work harder and lower efficiency, it could also exacerbate respiratory illnesses like common allergy symptoms.
Call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning today to inquire about your air conditioning system or to set-up your free in-home consultation.