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Central Air Conditioning: Care and Maintenance Tips

By Karen Lawson
Central Air Conditioning: Care and Maintenance Tips

Central air conditioners provide efficient and thorough home cooling. They also filter pollutants and clear the air in your home. Understanding how central air conditioning works and performing routine care and maintenance can help you save money and keep your air conditioner going strong.

A/C: The Cold Facts

When your home thermostat signals for cool air, the air handling unit draws in air through a network of ducts from various locations in your home. The air is then sent through a filter that removes pollutants. A refrigerant runs through copper tubing between the three main components of an air conditioner, the condenser, the evaporator, and a compressor. The condenser and compressor may be located outdoors, while the evaporator is housed in the air handling unit indoors. These components may also be contained together in one unit on the ground or on the roof of your home.

Keep it Chillin'

Cleaning your central air conditioner can help keep it running efficiently. Refer to your system's owner's manual for specific instructions. Before working on your air conditioner, always disconnect its power source. These troubleshooting tips can help you solve some common air conditioning problems:

  • Failure to cool can be caused by problems with the air conditioner or thermostat. Make sure the thermostat is set to "cool" and not just "fan."
  • Too much cooling can occur if the thermostat is not calibrated correctly or is located where it can't read an appropriate sample of air in your home.
  • A squealing noise can occur if the belt that connects the motor to the fan slips. Replace the belt according to manufacturer's instructions.

These are just a few things that can happen with central air conditioning systems. Your owner's manual may provide detailed instructions for basic repairs. When int doubt, it's time to contact a professional repair service.

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