Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money

August 08, 2016

Myth 1: Hire your air conditioner technician on Craigslist.

The World Wide Web has given us a variety of options to go to find an A/C system service technician, but beware because not all are qualified. While the Better Business Bureau provides you with information on whether a company is accredited and, if so, a letter grade determined by their business history and practices, other web pages are open to anyone who wants to post an ad. Case in point, Craigslist lets anyone post an ad promoting their services, regardless of whether or not they’re truly qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the proper training and experience.

If you choose a company or individual without getting to identify their qualifications and competence, it may end up costing you more over time. If the technician doesn’t have the qualifications to properly service your specific AC equipment, you might end up needing another, more experienced technician to correct their mistakes and it could cost you multiple Trip Charges.

Myth 2: Choosing a small business is better.

Hiring small businesses can be good for some small fixes – it’s wonderful for the local business, good for the economy, and maybe even great for your wallet. But be careful: small companies or one-person businesses could leave you holding the bag. If something bad happens, they may simply disappear and not be available to fix it, or they may not have the resources to get to you quickly, which is bad news 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 perks that help provide you with more confidence, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, excellent workmanship, a large certified team of servicemen and women who provide you service 24/7/365, and the confidence that they’ll be available in the future if you ever need them again.

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

With the government ending the manufacturing of R-22, many families are noticing the price of refilling their AC system’s refrigerant increasing. It may seem like an easy fix to just use a different and less expensive refrigerant, but if an air conditioner service technician gives you that advice, you may want to call for a second opinion.

Manufacturers detail the exact refrigerant the system is developed for, and before 2010, it was usually R-22. Although there is extreme reduction of the production of R-22, those AC systems are still designed for it, and using a different refrigerant may not only cause harm to your air conditioner, it could nullify your warranty. A nullified warranty may cost you way more in future parts due to potential damage.

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

Many people who are not currently having trouble with their air conditioner may believe they don’t actually need routine maintenance. It’s running fine, so why waste the money on a tune-up, right? Don’t forget the fact that an annual AC tune- up costs around $79 while repairs will run you around $500. Not to mention, most manufacturers instruct you to receive annual maintenance to maintain your warranty, so skipping your annual tune-up could cost you your warranty, resulting in a huge payout if your air conditioning system decides to go out on the hottest day of the year.

Myth 5: Researching the business isn’t necessary.

It’s important to check that you do your research before deciding on an air conditioner service contractor, especially if you feel a specific company is intimidating you. As we said in Myth #1, some websites don’t demand a person to be qualified to market their services. You need to know their qualifications and history so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service twice.

Social media reviews, references from family, and an a high accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all help you to understand the type of business you will be trusting your business to and help you decide if they are ideal for you. Angie’s List, Google+, and Yelp are all good places to start your homework. And, don’t be afraid to ask for past customer referrals. You might have to invest your hard-earned money with your air conditioning company, so invest a little time and research to confirm they are the right company for you.

Myth 6: It costs you more to turn your thermostat to a higher temperature while you’re away from home.

Long-term, it will increase your costs to leave the thermostat at a cooler temperature all through the day than to increase it 10 degrees while you are gone. It typically will not need an exorbitant amount of additional energy to cool your home once you arrive, depending on your home.

A programmable thermostat allows for the temperature to be increased or decreased from a mobile device so you can just adjust the temperature lower before arriving home, so your home is nice and comfy when you arrive. This decreases your energy during the day, as well as decreasing 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 reduce the temperature of the home by themselves. In fact, fans (similar to refrigerators) actually increase the temperature in your home. The motor that is forcing your fan to function creates heat, which can put heat in the air in the home. A good ceiling fan could help level the temperature of the room and may assist in cooling air by circulating, but if there isn’t a person beneath the fan to feel the breeze, all you’re doing is blowing through energy and money, especially if the AC is already running. So turn off ceiling fans when no one is in the room and additional air circulation is unnecessary.

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

Thermostats read the temperature around it to choose whether it needs to turn on the air conditioner to cool your home. Putting a thermostat in a bedroom will only ensure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is set to. Once that bedroom is cooled, the air conditioner will shut off and the rest of the floor or home may be a lot warmer. If the thermostat is placed near a well-lit window or an appliance, it might continuously read the temperature as being much higher than the rest of the home truly is and keep running your air conditioner, increasing your cooling bills.

Myth 9: Excessively lowering your thermostat will help it cool more speedily.

Lowering your air excessively may only make your air conditioner work longer, it won’t get colder any faster. If your thermostat is set to 77, but you really feel better at 75, then set it on 75 and it will kick on until it cools to that temperature. Decreasing the thermostat to 73 won’t make it lower to 75 any faster, and it will make your system run longer, costing you money and energy.

Myth 10: It’s ok to replace your air filter once a year.

Depending on the health issues for the people living in the home, and the type of air filter you utilize for your air conditioner, your air filter could need to be swapped out as often as every month. Failure to change the air filter often enough not only causes your air conditioner to work harder and lower efficiency, it could also exacerbate respiratory illnesses like common allergy symptoms.

Call Wesley Wood Service Experts today for more information about your air conditioner or to set-up your no-charge in-home consultation.

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