Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money

August 08, 2016

Myth 1: Find your air conditioner technician through Craigslist.

The World Wide Web has provided us with a variety of options to go to find an air conditioning service technician, but beware because not all are comparable. While the Better Business Bureau shows you information on whether a business is accredited and, if so, a letter grade depending on their company history and practices, other sites are accessible to anyone who requests to post an ad. Case in point, Craigslist lets anyone post an ad promoting their services, not requiring them to verify whether or not they’re really qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the correct training and experience.

If you choose a business or individual without having the ability to identify their qualifications and skill set, it could end up costing you more in the long run. If the technician doesn’t have the skills to properly service your actual AC equipment, you could end up needing another, more experienced company to repair their mistakes and end up paying multiple services charges.

Myth 2: Hiring a small business is better.

Contracting with small businesses can be good for some small fixes – it’s wonderful for the local business, great for the economy, and maybe even wonderful for your bank account. But proceed with caution: small companies or one-person businesses could let you down. If something fails, they may merely disappear and not be available to rectify the situation, or they may not have the resources to get to you quickly, which is not what you want if your air conditioning system dies in the extreme temperatures of summer.

Paying a little bit more for a sizable, more established and reliable company can come with advantages that help offer you more confidence, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, excellent workmanship, a large certified work force that gives you service 24/7/365, and the assurance that they’ll be available if you ever require their services.

 
Myth 3: It’s fine to use any type of refrigerant in your AC.

With the government ending the production of R-22, many homeowners are noticing the cost of refilling their AC system’s refrigerant rising. It may seem like a simple fix to just replace your R-22 with a different and less expensive refrigerant, but if an air conditioning service technician gives you that advice, you likely want to find a second opinion.

Manufacturers identify the exact refrigerant the equipment is designed for, and prior to 2010, it was usually R-22. Regardless of the extreme decline of the production of R-22, those air conditioning systems are still designed for it, and using a different refrigerant may not only cause destruction to your AC system, it could void your warranty. An invalidated warranty might cost you way more in future parts due to likely damage.

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

Many people who don’t currently have trouble with their air conditioning system may think they don’t actually need annual maintenance. It works just fine, so why use the money on a tune-up, right? Well there’s the fact that an annual AC tune- up runs you around $79 while repairs will cost you around $500. Additionally, most manufacturers require yearly maintenance to continue your warranty, so skipping your annual tune-up could cause you to lose your warranty, resulting in a huge payout if your air conditioning system decides to breakdown on the hottest day of the season.

Myth 5: Researching the company isn’t important.

It’s crucial to check that you do your due diligence before picking an air conditioner service business, especially if you feel a particular company is pushing you. As we discussed in Myth #1, some sites don’t require a contractor to be qualified to advertise their services. You need to know what you’re getting into so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service multiple times.

Website reviews, referrals from family, and an a great 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 choose if they are right for you. Angie’s List, Google+, and Yelp are all good places to start your homework. Also, don’t be scared to ask for prior customer testimonials. You might have to pay a pretty penny to your air conditioning technician, so invest some time and research to confirm they are the right company for your home.

Myth 6: It will cost more to turn your thermostat higher while you’re not at home.

Long-term, it will increase your costs to leave the thermostat at a lower temperature over the course of the day than to bump it up 10 degrees while you are away from your home. It usually will not take an outrageous amount of extra energy to cool your home once you arrive, depending on your home.

A programmable thermostat lets the temperature to be increased or decreased from a mobile device so you can actually adjust the temperature cooler before returning home, so your home is nice and comfy when you arrive. This saves you energy over the course of the day, as well as saving you money on your cooling bills.

Myth 7: Continuously running ceiling fans will help cool your home.

Fans help keep people cool, they don’t actually reduce the temperature of the home by themselves. In fact, fans (comparable to refrigerators) actually raise the temperature in your home. The motor that is making your fan operate creates heat, which can push heat into the air in your family’s home. A good ceiling fan can help level the temperature of your room and may assist in cooling air by circulating, but if there isn’t anyone beneath the fan to feel the cool air, all you’re doing is blowing through energy and money, especially if the AC is already working. So keep ceiling fans off when there is nobody in the room and extra air circulation is unneeded.

Myth 8: Don’t worry about where the thermostat is installed.

Thermostats use the temperature surrounding it to decide whether it needs to turn on the air conditioner to cool the home. Placing a thermostat in the bedroom will only ensure that bedroom lowers to the temperature that the thermostat is set to. Once that bedroom is cooled, the AC will shut off and the rest of the floor or home could be much warmer. If the thermostat is placed near a well-lit window or an appliance, it could always think the temperature is much higher than the living area truly is and constantly run your system, increasing your cooling bills.

Myth 9: Turning your thermostat down much lower will help it cool more speedily.

Decreasing your air by too much may only make your air conditioner run longer, it won’t get cooler any faster. If your thermostat is says 77, but you really want it to be 75, then set it on 75 and it will run until it gets to that temperature. Lowering the thermostat to 73 won’t make it get to 75 any faster, and it will make your system run longer, squandering money and energy.

Myth 10: It’s fine to change 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 air conditioner, your air filter might need to be replaced as often as every 30 days. Skipping the replacement of the air filter often enough not only causes your AC to work harder and reduce efficiency, it could also aggravate respiratory conditions like common allergy symptoms.

Call Midway Services today for more information about your air conditioner or to set-up your complimentary in-home consultation.

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