Can Maintenance Make Your Air Conditioner More Efficient?

Everyone loves to save money, but it's even better when you can reduce your utility bills without spending a fortune upfront. Unless your air conditioning system is brand-new or you take meticulous care of it, a few simple maintenance tasks can likely help to improve its efficiency drastically. Keep reading to discover four ways that deferred maintenance might be costing you money.

1. Clogged Filters Affect More Than Air Quality

While your air filter does help to prevent allergens and other irritants from circulating through your HVAC system and home, it's primary role is to protect your air conditioning equipment from these contaminants.

Without your filter, dust and other contaminants can build up on your evaporator coils. This layer of filth insulates the coils, reducing their ability to absorb heat. Even worse, a clogged filter can restrict airflow, forcing your fan to work harder, use more electricity, and potentially even burn out. Ensuring that your filter is clean and clear prevents these problems and keeps your AC working efficiently.

2. Dirty Evaporators May Freeze

Even if you keep your filter clean, your evaporator may slowly accumulate dust over time. If you have an annual HVAC check-up, then your technician should inspect your evaporator coils for signs of trouble. Unfortunately, deferring this simple maintenance step for more than a few years can lead to a significant amount of build-up on the evaporator.

When your evaporator becomes too dirty, there are two related effects: its efficiency drops, and it may become too cold. The coils on your evaporator transfer heat from your home's air to the cold refrigerant. If this process does not occur, then the refrigerant may stay too cold, overstressing the compressor and causing your evaporator coils to freeze.

3. Blocked Condenser Coils Create Problems

Your evaporator coils are only one half of the refrigerant cycle equation. Outside your home, your condenser coils release stored heat from your refrigerant into the atmosphere. Just like your evaporator coils, your condenser coils may become dirty over time. In fact, the condenser coils are more vulnerable due to constant exposure to the elements.

Clogged condenser coils have a similar effect on your system as filthy evaporator coils. Since your refrigerant cannot efficiently release heat to the atmosphere, other components in your system must work harder. Dirty condenser coils will reduce the efficiency of your entire AC system while potentially putting more stress on your costly compressor.

Hiring a professional to perform annual maintenance on your system is a great way to ensure that it's running well and operating efficiently. This simple yearly step can help you to avoid future problems and save money on your utility bills.

To learn more, contact an AC maintenance contractor.