Air conditioning is so common today that people tend to take it for granted. On a hot summer day, you can walk into a business and find yourself in an oasis of cool. You can switch on your home’s AC on the same day and enjoy the most relaxing summer possible. It’s almost like magic.
Except it’s not. In many ways, it’s more interesting than magic.
Allow us to pull back the curtain and open up the magician’s kit and show you some important basics about “AC magic.” Below are 5 facts about air conditioning that we wish everyone knew—because it makes it easier to take care of an AC system.
I. Air conditioners do not “generate” cooling
A heating system generates heat. That’s easy enough to understand. Heat is a form of energy, and a heating system supplies it. But an air conditioner doesn’t “generate” cooling—because “cool” is not a form of energy. It’s the absence of heat energy. What an air conditioner actually does is remove heat from a home, then blow that air around with lowered heat levels.
II. The refrigerant in an AC should remain at the same level
Refrigerant is sometimes mistaken for a fuel source: something the AC must consume in order to power its cooling. But an air conditioner doesn’t run from refrigerant. It runs from electricity. What the refrigerant does serve as the heat transference medium. It evaporates and condenses to absorb and release heat, and it doesn’t get used up in the process. Unless an AC develops leaks, it shouldn’t need to have any refrigerant added to it during its service life.
III. Ice is not involved in the cooling process
This is an important fact to know because if you notice ice on your AC system, it means there’s a malfunction of some kind and it’s time to call professionals. The movement of heat from inside the house to the outside isn’t supposed to create any ice. The ice you might see on the evaporator coil means the refrigerant is remaining colder than it should and freezing moisture along the coil, lowering the AC’s cooling power.
IV. Air conditioners must have maintenance annually, even if nothing seems wrong
It’s a common mistake: homeowners don’t arrange for regular maintenance for their AC systems because the systems seem to be working fine. Air conditioners need annual inspections and tune-ups (spring is the best time) to prevent repair problems, maintain energy efficiency, and ensure the longest service life possible.
V. The AC’s filter protects the system—it doesn’t clean the air
An air conditioner has a filter, and it needs to be regularly changed to keep the system efficient. However, because people often mistake the filter as an indoor air quality filter, they imagine it doesn’t need regular changing. The filter isn’t there to improve air quality, however. It’s there to keep dust and other debris from getting into the AC and damaging it. We recommend changing the filter every 1 to 3 months.
For the best work for your air conditioning in Salem, OR, only rely on professionals. We have the decades of experience to see you get only the best in AC repairs, installations, and maintenance.
Come to the AC experts when you need the best in cooling for your home or business. Comfort Flow Heating—Serving All of Oregon!