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How to Maintain and Troubleshoot your Air Conditioning System

Air Conditiong Maintenance Allegheny County

Keep your Air Conditioning Systems running well with the tips and troubleshooting answers listed below. Maintaining your AC will keep your systems performing at Top Notch, help you save money by using less energy, and stop major problems from occurring by assessing the smaller ones. Protect your home investment and read on to learn about how and why to check your system, assess issues, and ultimately uphold the value of your air conditioning system. Read on for 5 tips to help you maintain and prevent problems with your air conditioning system.

  1. Update Air Filter. The top cause of HVAC system malfunction is dirty filters. Also, those dirty filters make it harder for air to pass through, which causes the system to use more energy in pushing the air through all of the debris. If that isn’t enough to make you change your filter, then think about it this way: Dirty filters mean dirty air ducts which means the house is dirty and full of allergens. Keep your filters clean to avoid more problems, and keep the air in your house clean.
  2. Assess Air Leaks. If your system used to work better and make the air cooler and it isn’t anymore, then one of the many reasons that can occur is from leakage. Make sure your window units are sealed properly, (Tip: follow Top Notch on Facebook for tips on how to find leaks and more useful info!) and if they are leaking air, try stuffing foam in between the device and window frame. For central air-conditioning, check for leaks around duct connections. For ductwork, you can use foil tape to seal tiny gaps, and duct mastic for larger leaks.
  3. Check Compressor Health. Put your central air compressor and condensor on the north or east side of your house to keep it out of direct sunlight as much as possible. Place it in a clear area, 24 inches away from anything else to keep it running at its best. Troubleshooting compressor problems: If your compressor starts and the fan does not, then the condensor fan motor could be the issue. If the fan starts, and the compressor does not, your refrigerant could be low or the compressor might be bad.
  4. Assess Water Leaks. If your Air Conditioner is leaking water, then it may be due to a clogged tube, or due to a problem with the condensation pump. If ice is blocking the tube, then clean or change your filters and/or check refrigerant levels. If your refrigerant is low, a Top Notch technician will gladly refill it for you. If it’s not due to a tube, make sure the condensation pump is plugged into a working outlet, and then pour water into its collector, and then see if the pump starts. If it doesn’t start or does but doesn’t empty the water, its stuck or broken.
  5. Fix Noisy AC. Most newer air handlers have direct-drive motors, but older units may be belt driven. Squealing sounds can occur from air conditioning systems reliant on belts. See our previous blog post, to make sure a repair on an older machine is the right move, or if you need to prepare for the Freon Phase Out which may prove your system obsolete in light of new government changes for refrigerants. If your direct-drive motor is making noises that sound like squealing or grinding, call Top Notch – the motors bearings are probably shot.

If you have a question about maintenance or troubleshooting your AC unit or system that is not listed above, reach out to the Top Notch Heating and Cooling Experts. We service areas in and area Pittsburgh, including but not limited to homes in Allegheny County, Washington County, and some of Beaver and Fayette counties.

Find out more about Top Notch on the Top Notch website.

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