Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money

August 08, 2016

Myth 1: Get your AC technician from Craigslist.

The internet has gifted us with a variety of options to go to find an air conditioning service technician, but proceed with caution because not all are qualified. While the Better Business Bureau displays information on whether a company is accredited and, if so, a letter grade depending on their organization’s history and practices, other websites are accessible to anyone wanting to post an ad. For instance, 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 background.

If you hire a company or individual without being able to identify their qualifications and skill set, it might end up costing you more over time. If the tech doesn’t have the knowledge to properly fix your actual air conditioner, you could end up needing a different, more experienced company to fix their mistakes and it could cost you multiple Trip Charges.

Myth 2: Choosing a small business is better.

Contracting with small businesses can be great for some small fixes – it’s great for the local business, wonderful for the economy, and likely even good for your pocket book. But proceed with caution: small operations or one-person companies could leave you in a lurch. If something fails, they may merely disappear and not be available to fix it, or they could not have the manpower to get to you quickly, which is a problem if your air conditioning system malfunctions in the dog days of summer.

Budgeting a little bit more for a larger, more reputable and reliable company can come with benefits that help give you more peace of mind, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, expert workmanship, a large certified team of servicemen and women who provide you service 24/7/365, and the peace of mind that they’ll be there if you ever require their services.

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

With the government stopping the production of R-22, many families are seeing the cost of refilling their air conditioner’s refrigerant rising. It may sound like an easy fix to just replace your R-22 with a different and lower cost refrigerant, but if an AC service technician advises you to do that, you probably want to call for a second opinion.

Manufacturers detail the exact refrigerant the system is produced for, and previous to 2010, it was normally R-22. Although there is extreme decrease of the production of R-22, those air conditioning systems are still designed for it, and replacing R-22 with a different refrigerant may not only cause harm to your air conditioning equipment, it could nullify your warranty. A voided warranty may cost you hundreds or thousands more in future parts due to potential damage.

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

Many people who aren’t having trouble with their AC may believe they don’t actually need annual maintenance. It’s working fine, so why waste the money on a tune-up, right? Except for 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 yearly tune-up could also mean foregoing your warranty, meaning a large payout if your air conditioning system decides to die on the hottest day of the summer.

Myth 5: Researching the contractor isn’t valuable.

It’s crucial to check that you do your homework before deciding on an air conditioning service contractor, especially if you feel a specific company is putting pressure on you. As we said in Myth #1, some sites don’t require a company to be qualified to advertise their services. You absolutely need to know what you’re getting into so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service twice.

Social media reviews, testimonials from friends, and an a good accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all assure you of the type of company you will be giving your business to and help you choose if they are ideal for you. Google+, Angie’s List, and the BBB are all great review sites to start your search. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for past customer testimonials. You may have to invest your hard-earned money with your AC technician, so invest some time and research to confirm they are the right company for your AC.

Myth 6: It will cost more to turn your thermostat up while you’re not at home.

Over time, it will actually cost you more to leave the thermostat at a colder temperature all through the day than to raise it 10 degrees while you are away from your home. It normally will not need an outrageous amount of additional energy to cool your home once you arrive, depending on variables of the home.

A programmable thermostat lets the temperature to be adjusted from a tablet or phone so you can simply adjust the temperature cooler before arriving home, so your home is nice and comfy when you get home. This reduces your energy during the day, as well as lowering your cooling bills.

Myth 7: Always running ceiling fans will help keep your home cool.

Fans help keep people cool, they don’t really decrease the temperature of the home solo. In fact, fans (like refrigerators) actually heat up homes. The motor that is making your fan operate generates heat, which can put heat in the air in your family’s home. A good ceiling fan could help level the temperature of the room and may contribute to cooling air by circulating, but if nobody is beneath the fan to feel cool, all the fan is doing is wasting energy and money, especially if the air conditioning system is already running. So turn off ceiling fans when no one is in the room and extra air circulation is unnecessary.

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

Thermostats use the temperature around it to determine whether it needs to activate the AC to cool your home. Putting a thermostat in the bedroom will only help ensure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is set on. Once your bedroom is cooled, the system will turn off and the rest of the floor or home could be a lot warmer. If the thermostat is installed near a warm window or an appliance, it may always determine the temperature is much higher than the living area actually is and keep running your air conditioner, raising your cooling bills.

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

Turning your air down lower may only make your AC operate longer, it won’t get cooler any faster. If your thermostat is says 77, but you really would be more comfortable at 75, then put it at 75 and it will kick on until it cools to that temperature. Lowering the thermostat to 73 won’t make it cool to 75 any faster, and it will result in your system running longer, wasting money and energy.

Myth 10: It’s fine to swap out your air filter annually.

Depending on respiratory or allergy issues for the people living in the home, and the kind of air filter you utilize for your air conditioning system, your air filter might need to be swapped out as often as every month. Failure to change the air filter often enough not only causes your AC to work harder and reduce efficiency, it could also aggravate respiratory ailments like common allergy symptoms.

Call Stark Services today to inquire about your air conditioning system or to set-up your complimentary in-home consultation.

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