Why Is Maintaining Your Air Conditioner Important?

Spring brings the promise of warmer weather for the residents of DuPage county in towns like Oak Brook, Downers Grove, Westmont, Naperville and Lombard.  Accordingly, now is a good time to consider having your air conditioning serviced. Why is an annual cleaning important? You will get better energy efficiency, a longer life out of your system and fewer repairs. What should this include? At a minimum, your filters, coils, fins, vents, and condensate drain need regular attention, preferably in Spring, before the first use.

But, what are the procedures involved with doing something like this? There is a lot to consider. You need to shut off power, remove all debris from the surrounding area, clean and straighten the fins, clean the evaporator coil, change the filters, make sure the condensate drain is open and clean the vents. It is the kind of work that is probably best left to a NATE (North American Technician Excellence) certified technician.

According to the Department of Energy, “A well-trained technician will find and fix problems in your air conditioning system.” They additionally state “With normal airflow obstructed, air that bypasses the filter may carry dirt directly into the evaporator coil and impair the coil’s heat-absorbing capacity. Replacing a dirty, clogged filter with a clean one can lower your air conditioner’s energy consumption by 5% to 15%.” That can result in some fairly significant saving.

There is also the subtler saving from reduced repair costs. Unlike your energy savings, which you will see in your monthly statement, the savings from avoiding repair is not so obvious. How much money are we talking about? According to HomeAdvisor, the average air conditioning repair cost $325, with an average range of $165 to $507. Big ticket items can run $1,600 or more. And what does HomeAdvisor recommend you do? They state, “your HVAC professional can perform a yearly tune-up of your system . . .” and, “This yearly maintenance can go far toward heading off major repairs to your system, and provide you with peace of mind and considerable savings in the long term.”

Although your air conditioner may continue to operate without being regularly serviced, the eventual repairs will be much costlier, in the long run. You will also experience diminished cooing capacity that leads to those higher energy costs we mentioned earlier, leaving you with higher cost and less comfort to show for it.

But, what should you look in a professional service? Here are some thoughts:

1) Be prepared. Check the licensing and insurance requirements in your state and compare those to the credentials of the companies you are considering. Likewise, be sure to research the background of the companies you are considering.

2) Get your facts straight. Prior to engaging with a HVAC company, know the make and model of your system and any maintenance that has already been performed on the system. Check to see if your unit is still under warranty and make a list of any problems you may have encountered previously.

3) Get information in writing. If possible, it is in your best interest to get information in writing for new installation projects. All written estimates should provide a full description of the services to be provided and the materials to be used.

4) Become a detective. Check with family, friends and your social networks to get the names of HVAC professionals in your area. Another great source of information is the local Better Business Bureau or Chamber of Commerce in your area.

5) What sort of credentials do your potential companies have. Look for contractors whose technicians are certified by North American Technician Excellence (NATE).

But where can you find an honest, reputable and local company to use? You could call George Foreman’s friends at Invent Help or, better still, call Hearthstone Heating & Cooling. Serving the DuPage county area since 1996, Hearthstone Heating & Cooling is a company you can count on for the heart of your home. We are BBB A+ rated, offer a 2 year 100% money back guarantee on new installations and use NATE certified technicians. We also offer free in-home estimates and flat rate billing.  We have been proudly serving residents in Burr Ridge, LaGrange, Elmhurst and Clarendon Hills for over two decades and have earned a reputation for being honest, reliable and professional.

Call or visit our website today! Check out the seasonal discounts and schedule service while you’re at it. We are available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week to take on any emergency needs and we service all makes and models. Financing and rebates are also available.

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