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Time To Go Back To School with Air Conditioning 101

Brush Up on the Basics of Your Air Conditioning System

It’s here again - time to get the kids ready to go back to school and let the learning begin again! But why should kids get to have all the fun? This is the perfect time for grownups to do a little learning of their own and stay up to date on the important aspects of running a home. And what better place to start than the air conditioner? The AC keeps the place cool and comfortable all summer - but it also has an impact on the home’s energy efficiency and even the health of everyone who lives there. 

So read on to discover the basics of AC systems, how to troubleshoot them if there’s an issue, and the critical role they play in a home’s air quality.

Different Types of AC Systems

There are many different kinds of air conditioners on the market today, but they can typically be divided into two main groups - central and ductless. Both work by capturing heat and humidity from the indoor air and transferring it to the outdoor air using a system of fans and copper coils filled with a chemical refrigerant.

Central AC systems distribute the cooled indoor air throughout the house using a series of ducts, while ductless AC systems deliver the air directly into a given room. In a central system, one large main unit handles the needs of the whole house, but in most ductless systems, each separate room gets its own smaller unit. Ductless systems are generally more expensive but offer greater efficiency and zone control, while central systems are generally more easily (and cheaply) integrated into homes with existing ductwork.

Signs a Central AC Unit Needs To Be Repairedhvac

There are several ways to tell if an air conditioner needs repairs. If the system is blowing warm air, it’s likely the result of a faulty compressor but could also indicate a refrigerant leak. If the system is blowing very little air, replacing the filter may resolve the problem. If not, it could be a malfunctioning blower motor or leaky duct.

Suppose the unit runs constantly, but the house never reaches the desired temperature. In that case, the cause could be a faulty evaporator, clogged air filter, or a leak in the refrigerant lines or ductwork. Strange noises like screeching, scraping, or clanging are never good and may indicate a broken component. Water leaks or unpleasant odors coming from the unit may mean a clogged condensate drain line or even mold contamination within the ducts or the unit itself.

air filter

What Is Indoor Air Quality (and Why Does It Matter)?

Indoor air quality (often referred to as IAQ) denotes the quality or cleanliness of the air inside a home or other building. The presence of pollutants brings down a home’s indoor air quality, resulting in serious health issues for the home’s occupants - from respiratory irritation to long-term illness and disease. Common household pollutants include dust, dander, and pollen from a dirty air filter, mold in the AC unit or ducts, and aerosols from cleaning products.
Air conditioners help keep indoor air quality high by capturing particulate matter with the air filter, reducing humidity levels (which discourages mold growth), and ventilating indoor air to keep it fresh. In some cases, an air purifier can even be integrated with the HVAC system to further improve air quality. 

Taking steps to protect their IAQ is one of the best things homeowners can do for the health and well-being of their families, so it pays to consult with an HVAC or air quality expert for ways to do so.

About AirLux Heating & Cooling

AirLux Heating & Cooling has been proudly serving the Niles, MI community for years. Their licensed and background-checked technicians are punctual, courteous, efficient, and prioritize personal attention and clear communication. AirLux offers 24/7 emergency service, cost-effective maintenance plans, and 3-year warranties on every AC install and repair.