Clawson Heating & Air Conditioning Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Air Conditioning System Repair’

No, Your AC Doesn’t Need a Regular Refrigerant “Fill Up”

Monday, July 27th, 2020
air-conditioning-manometer-pressure-refrigerant

This is an important post, because it addresses a common misconception people often have about how air conditioning systems work. Most misunderstandings about how ACs operate can lead to problems, but this is a major one that can end up with a completely broken-down air conditioning system.

So, The Short Version …

  • The Misconception: Refrigerant is a kind of fuel the air conditioning system consumes as it runs and must have occasional refills in order for the AC to continue operating.
  • The Truth: Refrigerant is not a fuel source and the AC does not consume it. An air conditioner only needs to have more refrigerant in case of leaks.

The Detailed Version

We understand why people may mistake refrigerant as a fuel source. If it allows an air conditioner to cool off a house, it might be the power behind the system. But it isn’t. The power behind an air conditioner is electricity—that’s what provides energy to run the motors that power the compressor and the fans, the main components that make an air conditioner work.

What is refrigerant? It’s a heat transference medium: a blend of chemicals that can easily shift between liquid and gaseous states. As refrigerant moves between these two states, it either absorbs or releases heat. The refrigerant absorbs heat from the air inside the house to cool it for distribution around rooms and releases this heat through the outdoor unit. The compressor is responsible for putting the refrigerant under pressure so it moves through the system and can make the shift between temperature extremes.

Here is the important part: in going through the heat transfer process, the refrigerant does not dissipate. The AC system should maintain the same amount of refrigerant (called its charge) through its entire service life.

Refrigerant Leaks

Unfortunately, you may end up in a situation where you do need more refrigerant for your air conditioning in Lake Oswego, OR. This isn’t a regular occurrence, but the result of leaks in the refrigerant lines. Each air conditioning system is designed for a specific refrigerant charge. If the charge drops, it puts the system in jeopardy. The AC will start to lose cooling power, short-cycle, develop ice on the evaporator coil, and eventually, its compressor will overheat and burn out—usually the end of the line for the whole AC.

If you suspect you have leaking refrigerant (you notice any of the above problems, or you hear a hissing sound from the AC), call for our technicians right away. We can locate the leaks, seal them, and then recharge the refrigerant back to its factory levels.

Please, do not let amateurs do this work, because it’s common for an inexperienced “technician” to put too much refrigerant into the system. This is as bad for the AC as too little refrigerant. Also, be on the watch for anybody who claims to be an HVAC technician who tells you it’s time for a refrigerant “refill” or “top-off.” Those are not things!

Schedule your vital air conditioning services with Clawson Heating & Air Conditioning. “Connecting people to Comfort” is our business!

Continue Reading

Why You Don’t Want to See Ice on Your Air Conditioner

Monday, June 15th, 2020
frozen-air-conditioning-system

It’s okay if you don’t know the specific workings of your air conditioning system. Many people who drive cars have little idea about their mechanics, they simply know when to rely on people who do in case the car needs maintenance or repairs. It’s the same for air conditioning. You only need to know the basics of when to call for air conditioning repair in Portland, OR to let the experts handle the issue.

So, if you don’t realize that ice appearing on your air conditioner is a sign of a problem, we understand. This is an easy mix-up to make if you aren’t aware of how refrigeration equipment works. An air conditioner sends out cold ai, and it seems to make sense that ice might be a byproduct of the cooling process. But ice developing on an air conditioner’s evaporator coil is a major warning sign of something wrong—and you’ll need professionals to investigate it and repair the source of the problem.

Continue Reading

You Can Help Your AC Be More Efficient: Here’s How

Monday, June 1st, 2020
checkmark-green

In our last post, we wrote about what you need to know about air conditioner efficiency ratings. As we mentioned in that post, the efficiency rating on an air conditioner isn’t an absolute about how much it will save over its service life. You can help your AC achieve the highest possible savings each year if you follow a number of tips.

Below, you’ll find the main ways you can stop your air conditioner from suffering an efficiency plunge (and your utility bills from skyrocketing) this summer.

Continue Reading

Learn the Warning Signs of an AC in Trouble

Monday, April 20th, 2020
Air-conditioner-repairman

When your air conditioning system fails during a hot day, you’ll need speedy air conditioning repair in Portland, OR—or else you’ll be in for a stretch of uncomfortable conditions. Luckily, you have our NATE-certified technicians to assist you, and they’re ready with 24-hour emergency service to get your AC back into cooling shape again.

We also know that you’d rather not have to make an emergency call to fix a busted AC. Nobody wants to call for any type of emergency! You can prevent most repairs with regular maintenance. For the rest of the repairs, you can often catch signs of problems early, before they turn into a system breakdown. You’ll be able to call us to have the repairs done before they get worse and you’re stuck in an overheated home.

Below are a few of the most common warning signs that you’ve got a malfunctioning AC needing help.

Continue Reading