Summer is over, so you’re thinking, “Ahhh, that refrigerant leak I had can wait until summer to fix.” Is that right? Is it really that much of a problem? Yes it is, so we here at Kelly’s are going to provide some important reasons why you should address that problem sooner rather than later.
Refrigerant, which some people still call “Freon”, is used to transfer heat out of or into your home, depending on the season. When refrigerant levels are anything less than perfect, the efficiency of the system begins to go down. If your unit is over-charged or under-charged with Freon, it will not cool your home effectively or efficiently.
The real problem is that many homeowners may have a leak right now and not even know it. Perhaps during the summer it seemed your central cooling system was just barely keeping up with the demand for cooling in your home. It may have made it through to the end of the season, but, Did you notice an increase on your utility bills? Here are the most common symptoms of a low Freon charge:
Barely cool air or not cold at all: The air coming out of the vents in your home in the summer time should feel very cold. If the air feels cool, but not cold, the Freon levels in your air conditioner may be off.
High energy bills: Ever increasing energy bills is another sign of refrigerant issues. When Freon levels are low, the unit must work much harder to transfer heat. Energy usage goes up trying to maintain the same comfort level and consequently your energy bills go up as well.
A/C running constantly: Does your air conditioner kick off every hour or so, or does it run all the time? 24-hour operation is not normal and could indicate a low Freon charge in the system.
What about in the winter? Can you just ignore the situation until the weather heats back up again? No. Here’s why:
Do you have a Heat Pump central heating system? If so, then your system uses refrigerant both to heat and to cool your house. That means it is vital you get the leak fixed. Most Heat Pump systems have back up electric strip heaters that are not energy efficient no matter how you look at it. You don’t want those operating unless absolutely essential.
But even if you don’t have a Heat Pump, ignoring a refrigerant leak is not wise. In a standard air conditioning unit, which is only operating in the spring, summer, and fall seasons, a refrigerant leak won’t increase your utility bills during the winter since it won’t be running. However, if the leak continues, and all the refrigerant leaks out, you are risking serious damage to your central air conditioning system. Why?
The inner workings of an air conditioning system require that it remain free of contaminants and moisture that are in the air. A system that is in good condition is sealed from this contamination. But if there is a leak, and all the refrigerant leaks out, then the seal is broken and moisture and dirt can enter the system causing damage. In the end, the compressor will be compromised and can fail much quicker than it is designed for.
Don’t let sweep the problem under the rug. Call a professional and trusted heating and air service company. If you’re in Lewisville or the nearby area, give us a call now, or use our online form to request a service call. We guarantee your satisfaction 100%!
Do you have other questions about your furnace, heat pump, or air conditioner? Visit our “Ask an Expert” page, fill out the form, and our resident expert will get back to you quickly.