Air Conditioning Myths That May Cost You More Money Published on August 08, 2016 Myth 1: Get your AC technician on Craigslist. The interweb has given us a variety of choices to go to look for an A/C system service technician, but beware because not all are qualified. While the Better Business Bureau shows you information on whether a business is accredited and, if so, a letter grade based on their company history and practices, other sites are available to anyone who requests to post an ad. For instance, Craigslist allows anyone to post an ad providing their services, despite whether or not they’re really qualified, licensed and bonded, or have the proper training and experience. If you decide on a business or individual without having the ability to identify their qualifications and capability, it might end up costing you more ultimately. If the tech doesn’t have the qualifications to properly repair your particular air conditioner, you could end up needing a different, more experienced company to correct their mistakes and it could end up costing you multiple service charges. Myth 2: Choosing a small business is better. Contracting with small businesses can be wonderful for some minor home services – it’s great for the local business, great for the economy, and maybe even great for your bank account. But be careful: small companies or one-person companies could let you down. If something fails, they may merely disappear and not be around to rectify the situation, or they could not have the resources to get your issue resolved quickly, which is not what you want if your air conditioner breaks down in the heat of the summer.Budgeting a little bit more for a bigger, more trusted and reliable company can come with perks that help provide you with more peace of mind, including a one-year satisfaction guarantee, expert workmanship, a large certified team of technicians who give you service 24/7/365, and the assurance that they’ll be available if you ever require their services. Myth 3: It’s fine to use any type of refrigerant in your air conditioner. With the government ending the making of R-22, many people are observing the fee of refilling their AC system’s refrigerant rising. It may seem like a simple fix to just substitute a different and less expensive refrigerant, but if an air conditioning service technician advises you to do that, you may want to find a second opinion. Manufacturers detail the exact refrigerant the system is produced for, and prior to 2010, it was usually R-22. Despite the extreme reduction of the production of R-22, those AC systems are still designed for it, and using a different refrigerant may not only cause destruction to your AC system, it could void your warranty. A nullified warranty might cost you hundreds or thousands more in future parts due to likely damage. Myth 4: You don’t need routine air conditioning maintenance. Most people who aren’t having trouble with their air conditioning system may believe they don’t truly need annual maintenance. It’s operating fine, so why use the money on a tune-up, right? Don’t forget the fact that an annual AC tune- up is priced around $79 while the cost of a repair averages around $500. Not to mention, most manufacturers require yearly maintenance to maintain your warranty, so foregoing your yearly tune-up could also mean foregoing your warranty, which means a large payout if your air conditioner decides to go out on the hottest day of the season. Myth 5: Learning about the contractor isn’t valuable. It’s crucial to check that you do your homework before deciding on an air conditioner service business, especially if you feel a particular company is intimidating you. As we said in Myth #1, some websites don’t require a company to be qualified to place an ad for their services. You absolutely need to know their qualifications and history so you don’t have to worry about paying for the same service multiple times. Social media reviews, referrals from friends, and an a great accreditation grade with the Better Business Bureau will all confirm the type of business you will be offering your business to and help you choose if they are best for you. Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google+ are all wonderful websites to start your search. Also, don’t be scared to ask for past customer testimonials. You may have to invest your hard-earned money with your AC technician, so invest a little time and research to confirm they are the ideal company for your home. Myth 6: It costs you more to turn your thermostat higher while you’re out of your home. Over time, it will increase your costs to leave the thermostat at a colder temperature throughout the day than to raise it 10 degrees while you are away from your home. It usually will not require an excessive amount of more energy to cool your home once you arrive, depending on the home.A programmable thermostat permits the temperature to be adjusted from a mobile device so you can easily adjust the temperature cooler before coming home, so your home is cool and comfortable when you get home. This reduces your energy during the day, as well as reducing your cooling bills. Myth 7: Continuously running ceiling fans will help cool your home. Fans help keep people cool, they don’t really lower the temperature of the home by themselves. In fact, fans (similar to refrigerators) actually heat up homes. The motor that is causing your fan to run produces heat, which can add heat to the air in your family’s home. An efficient ceiling fan does help level the temperature of a room and may help to cool air by circulating, but if nobody is under the fan to feel the cool air, all the fan is doing is squandering energy and money, especially if the air conditioning system is already running. So leave ceiling fans off when there is no one 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 turn on the air conditioner to cool down your home. Placing a thermostat in your bedroom will only ensure that bedroom reaches the temperature that the thermostat is set on. Once the bedroom is cooled, the AC will shut off and the remaining floor or home could be a lot warmer. If the thermostat is installed near a warm window or an appliance, it may constantly determine the temperature is much higher than the home truly is and keep running your air conditioner, increasing your utility bills. Myth 9: Excessively lowering your thermostat will help it cool more quickly. Decreasing your air by too much may only make your air conditioner operate 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 cools to that temperature. Putting the thermostat on 73 won’t make it lower to 75 any faster, and it will cause your system to run long, squandering money and energy. Myth 10: It’s ok to swap out your air filter once every twelve months. Depending on respiratory or allergy issues for the people living in the home, and the style of air filter you utilize for your AC, your air filter may need to be changed as often as every four weeks. Skipping the replacement of the air filter often enough not only causes your AC to work harder and decrease efficiency, it could also exacerbate respiratory conditions like common allergy symptoms. Call Hammond Plumbing & Heating today to inquire about your air conditioner or to set-up your no-charge in-home consultation.