Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money

August 08, 2016

Myth 1: Find your air conditioner technician from Craigslist.

The World Wide Web has given us a variety of places to go to get an air conditioning service technician, but be careful because not all are qualified. While the Better Business Bureau gives you information on whether a business is accredited depending on their business history and practices, other web pages are available to anyone who requests to post an ad. For example, Craigslist will allow anyone to post an ad promoting their services, despite whether or not they’re actually qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the correct training and experience.

If you hire a company or individual without being able to identify their qualifications and competence, it may end up costing you more over time. If the tech doesn’t have the knowledge to properly repair your actual air conditioner, you may end up needing another, more experienced company to correct their mistakes and it could end up costing you multiple Trip Charges.

Myth 2: Hiring 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 likely even great for your pocket book. But be careful: small companies or one-person operations could leave you holding the bag. If something bad happens, they may merely disappear and not be around to fix it, or they may not have the resources to get your issue resolved quickly, which is not what you want if your air conditioner malfunctions in the extreme temperatures of summer.

Paying a little bit more for a bigger, more reputable and reliable company can come with advantages that help offer you more assurance, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, quality 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 a call away in the future if you ever need them again.

Myth 3: You can use any type of refrigerant in your air conditioning system.

With the government putting an end to the manufacturing of R-22, many families are noticing the cost of refilling their air conditioner’s refrigerant rising. It may seem like a simple fix to just replace your R-22 with a different and less expensive refrigerant, but if an air conditioning 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 before 2010, it was normally R-22. Regardless of the extreme decrease of the production of R-22, those air conditioning systems are still designed for it, and using a different refrigerant may not only cause harm to your AC system, it could invalidate your warranty. An invalidated warranty might cost you a lot more in future parts due to possible damage.

Myth 4: You don’t need annual air conditioning maintenance.

Most people who are not currently having trouble with their air conditioner may assume they don’t truly need annual maintenance. It works just fine, so why use the money on a tune-up, right? Except for the fact that an annual AC tune- up costs around $79 while repairs will cost you around $500. Not to mention, most manufacturers require routine maintenance to keep your warranty valid, so foregoing your annual tune-up could also mean foregoing your warranty, resulting in a huge payout if your air conditioner decides to die on the hottest day of the year.

Myth 5: Researching the business isn’t important.

It’s crucial to make sure you do your research before choosing an AC service contractor, especially if you feel a single company is putting pressure on you. As we said in Myth #1, some sites don’t demand a contractor to be qualified to place an ad for their services. You absolutely need to know their qualifications and history so you don’t end up paying for the same service twice.

Website reviews, testimonials from friends, and an a good accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all confirm the type of company you will be giving your business to and help you choose if they are ideal for you. Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google+ are all wonderful websites to start your homework. And, don’t be shy to ask for past customer referrals. You could have to invest your hard-earned money with your AC technician, so invest the time and research to ensure they are the best company for your AC.

Myth 6: It costs more to turn your thermostat higher while you’re not at home.

Over time, it will increase your bills to leave the thermostat at a lower temperature throughout the day than to increase it 10 degrees while you are away from your home. It usually will not take an exorbitant amount of additional energy to get your home comfortable once you return, depending on your home.

A programmable thermostat allows for the temperature to be increased or decreased from a mobile device so you can actually adjust the temperature lower before coming home, so your home is cool and comfy when you arrive. This reduces your energy throughout the day, as well as lowering your cooling bills.

nest thermostat

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

Fans help keep people cool, they don’t actually lower the temperature of the home alone. In fact, fans (like refrigerators) actually raise the temperature in your home. The motor that is forcing your fan to function produces heat, which can push heat into the air in your home. A well-working ceiling fan could help level the temperature of a room and may assist in cooling air by circulating, but if there isn’t anyone below the fan to feel cool, all it’s doing is squandering energy and money, especially if the air conditioner is already working. So keep ceiling fans off when there is no one in the room and additional air circulation is unneeded.

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

Thermostats read the temperature near it to decide whether it needs to start up the air conditioning system to cool down your home. Putting a thermostat in the bedroom will only ensure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is set to. Once that bedroom is cooled, the system will shut off and the rest of the floor or home may be a lot warmer. If the thermostat is put near a sunny window or an appliance, it might continuously read the temperature as being much higher than the rest of the home really is and continuously run your AC, upping your energy bills.


Myth 9: Turning your thermostat down much lower will help it cool faster.

Turning your air down lower may only make your air conditioner work longer, it won’t get to a colder temperature any faster. If your thermostat is set on 77, but you really feel better at 75, then set it on 75 and it will work until it reaches that temperature. Lowering the thermostat to 73 won’t make it get to 75 any faster, and it will result in your system running longer, wasting money and energy.

Myth 10: It’s acceptable to swap out your air filter once a year.

Depending on the health issues for the people living in the home, and the style of air filter you have for your air conditioning system, your air filter may need to be swapped out as often as every four weeks. Failure to change the air filter often enough not only means for your air conditioner to work harder and decrease efficiency, it could also exacerbate respiratory conditions like common allergy symptoms.

Call Boehmers/Cronin Emery Home Services by Enercare today for more information about your air conditioning system or to set-up your complimentary in-home consultation.