In the midst of triple-digit summer temperatures, your home’s air conditioner is the go-to appliance that gets you through the day. You rely on it to keep your family comfortable, yet many people tend to look the other way when the A/C sputters or moans or otherwise complains. Before your trusty cooling device fades for good, take a strategic look at the unit, how it operates, and what to expect if repairs are needed.
How long do Air Conditioners Last?
Similar to many other home-related questions, the longevity of air conditioners depends on an array of factors, the most significant being usage. The more you use an A/C system, the more wear and tear it endures. Most modern systems can operate efficiently for decades if given regular maintenance but daily use for months in very hot climates will take its toll.
How Often Does an Air Conditioner Need More Freon?
Nearly all air conditioning systems today are manufactured and shipped with the amount of freon the system needs for its lifespan. Unless a leak develops or something else goes wrong, an A/C system should never need freon added. Freon is enclosed in and travels through copper coils and there is no way for it to escape unless there is a leak.
How Long Does a Home Air Conditioning Recharge Take?
An air conditioning systems only job is to keep your home at a comfortable temperature and if this is not happening, something is wrong. Assuming proper maintenance is being done but a problem still persists, your system might need a recharge. “Recharge” actually means “refill” since this type of maintenance does not involve electricity. The system’s refrigerant pulls heat from the air and moves it into a compressor but low refrigerant affects the heat transfer. Refilling refrigerant only takes around 30 minutes and should be done by a professional.
Who Repairs Air Conditioners?
Air conditioner repairs are commonly completed by heating and cooling professionals trained and certified for this type of work. Research a company beforehand whenever possible to be sure they are right for your job. Some A/C repairs can be completed at home by handy DIYers, such as verifying power to the unit, resetting switches and capacitors, cleaning and changing filters and condensation drain, and cleaning the compressor.
How Much Does an Air Conditioner Repair Cost?
Like many other home ownership challenges, air conditioner repairs sneak up on us and they can come with significant cost. Most heating and cooling contractors charge a service fee to cover labor involved for a technician to inspect the system. Service fees usually run around $100. Average A/C unit repairs are around $300, but range from simple drain tube replacements to complex and expensive condenser coil repair.