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 options to go to get an air conditioning service technician, but beware because not all are comparable. While the Better Business Bureau displays information on whether a company is accredited based on their company history and practices, other web pages are open to anyone wanting to post an ad. For example, Craigslist will allow anyone to post an ad providing their services, not requiring them to verify whether or not they’re actually qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the correct training and experience.

If you decide on a contractor or individual without having the ability to identify their qualifications and skill set, it could end up costing you more over time. If the serviceman or woman doesn’t have the knowledge to properly service your actual air conditioner, you could end up needing another, more experienced contractor to correct their mistakes and end up paying multiple Trip Charges.

Myth 2: Choosing a small business is better.

Working with small businesses can be wonderful for some minor home services – it’s wonderful for the local business, great for the economy, and maybe even good for your bank account. But use caution: small companies or one-person operations could leave you holding the bag. If something backfires, they may conveniently disappear and not be there to rectify the situation, or they may not have the workforce to get you taken care of quickly, which is not what you want if your AC breaks down in the extreme temperatures of summer.

Paying a little bit more for a larger, more established and reliable company can come with advantages that help give you more peace of mind, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, excellent workmanship, a large certified team of technicians who give you service 24/7/365, and the assurance that they’ll be a call away if you need them again.

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

With the government discontinuing the making of R-22, many families are observing the price of refilling their air conditioner’s refrigerant increasing. It may seem like a simple fix to just replace your R-22 with a different and lower cost refrigerant, but if an air conditioner service technician advises you to do that, you probably want to get a second opinion.

Manufacturers identify the exact refrigerant the system is designed for, and before 2010, it was commonly R-22. Regardless of the extreme decrease of the production of R-22, those AC systems are still designed for it, and substituting a different refrigerant may not only cause destruction to your AC system, it could nullify your warranty. A nullified warranty might cost you way more in future parts due to possible damage.

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

Many people who are not currently having trouble with their air conditioner may believe they don’t really need routine maintenance. It’s operating fine, so why spend the money on a tune-up, right? Except for the fact that a yearly AC tune- up is priced around $79 while repairs will set you back around $500. Additionally, most manufacturers require yearly maintenance to keep your warranty valid, so skipping your routine tune-up could also mean foregoing your warranty, which means a huge payout if your air conditioner decides to die on the hottest day of the season.

Myth 5: Learning about the business isn’t important.

It’s critical to check that you do your homework before deciding on an air conditioner service contractor, especially if you feel a single company is pressuring you. As we mentioned in Myth #1, some sites don’t need a contractor to be qualified to place an ad for their services. You absolutely need to know what you’re getting into so you don’t end up paying for the same service twice.

Social media reviews, testimonials from friends, and an a high accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all confirm the type of company you will be trusting your business to and help you figure out if they are ideal for you. Google+, Angie’s List, and the BBB are all good places to start your homework. Remember, don’t be afraid to ask for previous customer referrals. You might have to pay a pretty penny to your air conditioner contractor, so invest the time and research to make sure they are the best company for your home.

Myth 6: It costs 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 cooler temperature all through the day than to raise it 10 degrees while you’re away. It normally will not take an excessive amount of more energy to cool your home once you arrive, depending on variables of the home.

A programmable thermostat lets the temperature to be increased or decreased from a mobile device so you can just adjust the temperature cooler before returning home, so your home is cool and comfy when you enter. This decreases your energy throughout the day, as well as saving you money on your cooling bills.

Nest Thermostat

Myth 7: Always running ceiling fans will help lower the temperature in your home.

Fans help keep people cool, they don’t really lower the temperature of the home solo. In fact, fans (comparable to refrigerators) actually increase the temperature in your home. The motor that is causing your fan to run generates heat, which can put heat in the air in the home. A well-working ceiling fan does 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 cool, all the fan is doing is squandering energy and money, especially if the air conditioner is already working. So turn off ceiling fans when no one is 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 determine whether it needs to start up the air conditioning system to cool down your home. Placing a thermostat in your bedroom will only ensure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is set to. Once your bedroom is cooled, the system will go 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 may continuously determine the temperature is much higher than the rest of the home truly is and continuously run your air conditioner, upping your utility bills.

Thermostat screen

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

Lowering your air excessively may only make your air conditioning system run longer, it won’t get to a colder temperature any faster. If your thermostat is set on 77, but you really want it to be 75, then set it to 75 and it will kick on until it cools to that temperature. Putting the thermostat on 73 won’t make it cool to 75 any faster, and it will result in your system running longer, squandering money and energy.

Myth 10: It’s acceptable to replace your air filter annually.

Depending on the health conditions of the people living in the home, and the kind of air filter you have for your AC, your air filter could need to be swapped out as often as every month. Failure to change the air filter often enough not only makes your air conditioner to work harder and decrease efficiency, it could also irritate respiratory conditions like common allergy symptoms.

Call R & M Climate Control Service Experts today for more information about your AC or to set-up your no-charge in-home consultation.

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