list of questions
Why should I perform preventive maintenance?Heating and cooling systems work incredibly hard to perform their functions for your household. The constant stopping, starting and continual operation can wear down a machine quickly and unexpectedly if the proper care and maintenance is delayed. However, by performing preventive maintenance, or servicing your system regularly, you can maximize the lifecycle of your heating or cooling unit and guard against many unexpected failures.
Preventive maintenance inspections performed on a regular basis can uncover leaks, rust, rot, soot, frayed wires and corroded electrical contacts.
What type of filter should I use?Standard filters work to keep your system and its ductwork clean, but they don’t really improve indoor air quality. To do that you need a media filter. The media filter rests between the main return duct and the blower cabinet and will improve dust and particle removal by seven times that of a standard filter. However, upgrading to a pleated media filter will remove everything from insecticide dust to airborne viruses from the filtered air.
A media filter can have a life exceeding two months, and its only drawback is that its tight fiber weave can cause your furnace to have to work harder to blow air through the house. Always choose a filter that matches your blower’s capacity.
How do I really know if I should fix it or replace it?Typically if your system is ten years or older and you have some sort of major failure it is time to consider replacing your system, as with cars the components reach a point where they are going to start to fail and investing large amounts for repairs on a system that will be prone to even more failures just does not make good sense.
Why is water leaking on my floor with the air conditioner on?Most of the time when water leaks from an air conditioner on the floor the drain line is stopped up. You can use compressed air or a wet vac to try and unstop the drain line.
Water leaking can also be caused by a leaking coil drain pan. The evaporator coil sets in a drain pan. If the pan rusts out and gets holes in it, it will leak. You or the service man would need to inspect the coil to see if the drain pan is leaking. This can be difficult and time consuming since the coil is usually cover up with sheet metal and you need to look under the coil bottom. The coil drain pan is hard to repair and you usually have to take the coil completely out to repair the leak.
Water on the floor can also be caused by a coil that freezes up or forms ice. This condition is usually cause by a low refrigerant charge, but can also be caused by a stopped up filter, dirty blower, dirty coil or a motor that is dragging (going bad) and not producing enough air flow. A weak capacitor could cause a motor to not run up to speed.
What could be causing my indoor coil to freeze up?
Freeze ups are caused most of the time by a low refrigerant charge. Before you call someone to check the charge on your system I would make sure the filter is clean. Freeze ups can also be caused by a dirty blower wheel, dragging motor (might need a new capacitor) or a dirty evaporator coil (might need cleaning on the underside). Most of the time it is low on charge.
Yes, you can turn the air conditioner back on once it melts, but make sure the larger line is good and cold going back into the outdoor unit. You will need to possibly get under the black insulation and feel the bare copper line. After the unit runs for 10 to 15 minutes the line should feel like a cold coke can right out of the refrigerator. If it doesn't then you are low on charge and need to get a technician to find the leak and charge it up as quickly as possible. It is very hard on the compressor to run without enough refrigerate.