Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money

August 08, 2016

Myth 1: Hire your AC technician from Craigslist.

The internet has given us a variety of choices to go to get an A/C system service technician, but beware because not all are created equal. While the Better Business Bureau provides you with information on whether a company is accredited and, if so, a letter grade depending on their organization’s history and practices, other websites are available to anyone wanting to post an ad. For instance, Craigslist lets anyone post an ad providing their services, regardless of whether or not they’re truly qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the correct training and background.

If you choose a company or individual without being able to identify their qualifications and capability, it might end up costing you more over time. If the serviceman or woman doesn’t have the qualifications to properly service your actual air conditioning system, you could end up needing a second, more experienced technician to repair their mistakes and it could cost you multiple service charges.

Myth 2: Hiring a small business is better.

Hiring small businesses can be good for some minor home services – it’s great for the local business, wonderful for the economy, and likely even wonderful for your wallet. But beware: small operations or one-person businesses could leave you holding the bag. If something goes wrong, they may conveniently disappear and not be around to fix it, or they might not have the manpower to get your issue resolved quickly, which is a problem if your air conditioning system goes out in the extreme temperatures of summer.

Spending a little bit more for a sizable, more reputable and reliable company can come with advantages that help provide you with more confidence, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, quality workmanship, a large certified team of technicians who give you service 24/7/365, and the peace of mind 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 air conditioning system.

With the government discontinuing the production of R-22, many homeowners are seeing the price of refilling their AC system’s refrigerant rising. It may sound like an easy fix to just substitute a different and cheaper refrigerant, but if an AC 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 previous to 2010, it was normally R-22. Despite the extreme decline 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 air conditioning equipment, it could nullify your warranty. An invalidated warranty may cost you a lot more in future parts due to likely damage.

Myth 4: You don’t need annual air conditioning maintenance.

Most people who aren’t having trouble with their air conditioning system may assume 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 the cost of a repair averages around $500. Also, most manufacturers demand annual maintenance to keep your warranty valid, so foregoing your routine tune-up could also mean foregoing your warranty, which means a huge payout if your air conditioner decides to go out on the hottest day of the year.

Myth 5: Researching the business isn’t important.

It’s crucial to make sure you do your homework before deciding on an AC service company, especially if you feel a single company is putting pressure on you. As we mentioned in Myth #1, some sites don’t require a person to be qualified to advertise their services. You absolutely need to know who you’re working with so you don’t have to pay for the same service multiple times.

Social media reviews, referrals from family, and an a good accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all help you to understand the type of company you will be trusting your business to and help you choose if they are ideal for you. Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google+ are all wonderful websites to start your homework. Remember, don’t be shy to ask for previous customer testimonials. You could have to invest your money with your AC company, so invest the time and research to ensure they are the ideal company for your home.

Myth 6: It will cost more to turn your thermostat to a higher temperature while you’re out of your home.

Over time, it will actually cost you more 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 cool your home once you return, depending on your home.

A programmable thermostat permits the temperature to be adjusted from a phone or tablet so you can simply adjust the temperature cooler before returning home, so your home is nice and comfy when you arrive. This reduces your energy during 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 you cool, they don’t truly reduce the temperature of the home solo. In fact, fans (like refrigerators) actually heat up homes. The motor that is making your fan run produces heat, which can add heat to the air in your home. A well-working ceiling fan can help level the temperature of your room and may contribute to cooling air by circulating, but if there isn’t a person below the fan to feel the breeze, all it’s doing is squandering energy and money, especially if the AC is already running. So turn off ceiling fans when there is no one in the room and additional air circulation is unnecessary.

Myth 8: It doesn’t matter where the thermostat is installed.

Thermostats read the temperature near it to choose whether it needs to start up the AC to cool your home. Installing a thermostat in the bedroom will only help ensure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is adjusted to. Once the bedroom is cooled, the AC will turn off and the rest of the floor or home might be much warmer. If the thermostat is put near a well-lit window or an appliance, it may always think the temperature is much higher than the living area truly is and keep running your system, increasing your cooling bills.

Myth 9: Lowering your thermostat way low will help it cool more quickly.

Lowering your air excessively may only make your air conditioning system operate longer, it won’t get to a colder temperature any faster. If your thermostat is set on 77, but you really feel better at 75, then set it to 75 and it will work until it gets to that temperature. Putting the thermostat on 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 ok to change your air filter annually.

Depending on the health conditions of the people living in the home, and the type of air filter you utilize for your air conditioning system, your air filter could need to be swapped out as often as every month. Skipping the replacement of the air filter often enough not only makes your air conditioner to work harder and reduce efficiency, it could also irritate respiratory illnesses like common allergy symptoms.

Call Mountainwest Service Experts today for more information about your air conditioning system or to set-up your complimentary in-home consultation.

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