Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing Blog: Archive for the ‘Air Conditioning’ Category

Breaking Down AC Warning Noises

Monday, September 5th, 2022
Don't wanna hear

Air conditioning systems become quieter as technology advances. Today’s ACs can work almost unnoticed in a home—just the gentle blowing of air from the vents connected to the central cooling system, with most of the noise coming from the outdoor condenser cabinet, and even that is quieter than it used to be thanks to advances like scroll compressors. 

This general quiet makes it easier to notice an AC that’s making strange sounds. You don’t want these sounds interrupting your pleasant summer days, but they do have a useful side: they warn that you may need air conditioning service in Gaithersburg, MD to fix it! 

Today, we’re going to break down some of the more common warning noises your AC can make and what they may mean… 

Continue Reading

Signs of an AC Compressor in Peril

Monday, August 22nd, 2022
compressor-in-ac-unit

When it comes to AC repair in Frederick, MD, the part you most want to keep in good shape is the compressor. This component is the workhorse of the air conditioning system: it consumes the most electricity to run (35,000–41,000 watts per hour) and it’s necessary to cause refrigerant to circulate through the AC and move heat from indoors to outdoors. Because the compressor is such an expensive part to replace, people often opt to replace their entire air conditioning system when the compressor fails.

In other words, if you can possibly catch a compressor that’s in danger of failing, you want to. If technicians can perform repairs that will rescue the compressor, you’ll have prevented a much more expensive service.

So … how can you tell that your compressor may need our technicians’ attention?

Continue Reading

What Can Happen If You Leave a Dirty Air Filter in Place

Monday, August 8th, 2022
clean-air-filter

Changing your air filter is one of the most important parts of maintaining your air conditioning system, but many homeowners forget to do it. Without giving your AC a new air filter every 1 to 3 months, you run the risk of short-cycling, low airflow, and even system damage. 

The air filter is one of the simplest but most critical components of your HVAC system. It prevents dirt, dust, and debris from building up in your AC. It also defends your system against larger hazards that could break the entire AC or even start a fire.

If you ever find yourself in need of air conditioning repair in Bethesda, MD, your air filter may be the reason why. 

Continue Reading

Why Does My AC Smell Like Unwashed Socks?

Monday, July 25th, 2022
girl-oinching-her-nose

No, nobody has secretly been stuffing unwashed socks into your ventilation system (unless you know something we don’t). This unpleasant odor coming from the vents when the air conditioner turns on is a common problem known, appropriately, as “dirty sock syndrome.” You want to have it fixed, not just to eliminate the sour odor from wafting around your house, but because it indicates a problem with the air conditioning system that will impair its performance and cost you more to run it.

Follow us below as we look more into dirty sock syndrome.

Continue Reading

How Dirty Coils Create AC Problems

Monday, June 27th, 2022
air-conditioner-evaporator-coil

Your air conditioning system has two sets of coils that are responsible for it to do its basic job of cooling your house. An AC works through a process called heat exchange, which is the movement of heat from one place to another. The job of the refrigerant coils in heat exchange is to directly interact with the air. The indoor coil (known as the evaporator coil) removes heat from the air blown over it, and the outdoor coil (known as the condenser coil) releases this heat into the air outdoors.

An AC’s coils can run into several problems that will require air conditioning repair in Rockville, MD to prevent the air conditioning system from turning inefficient, losing cooling power, overheating, or developing ice along the coils. The most common problem for the coils is when they get dirty.

Continue Reading

May Is a Fine Month for AC Maintenance

Monday, May 16th, 2022
check-boxes

May in general is a fine month, the best month of spring. Although cold snaps may still strike, we mostly enjoy the ideal warm weather without extreme heat. May is superb for many outdoor activities. It’s also a great time to schedule regular air conditioning maintenance.

We know that doesn’t sound like a fun May activity, but when you go with air conditioning service in Frederick, MD with the team at Tuckers, you’ll find it’s easy to have maintenance done and enjoy the benefits for the rest of spring and summer. It’s also a job you never want to miss out on—few AC services have as many advantages and pay off so well in the future, both in savings and comfort!

Continue Reading

Was This the Final Summer for Your AC? Some of the Signs

Monday, September 6th, 2021
air-conditioner-with-dirty-coils

Saying goodbye to an old air conditioning system shouldn’t be difficult. No one forms sentimental attachments to HVAC appliances. An air conditioner is designed to do a vital job for a home—keeping it comfortable during the heat—and when it can no longer do that job effectively or without raising utility prices extremely high, then replacing is a straightforward solution. 

And yet, people still find it difficult to make the final choice to replace an air conditioner that’s on the decline. We understand: the job costs money and takes planning, and maybe the current AC isn’t that bad. It’s easy to procrastinate on this type of home service. 

We’re here to help you make the right choice for your AC at the end of the summer. You don’t want to delay getting a new air conditioner during the fall (a convenient time for the service) if your current cooling system has sent out signals this was its last summer of effective and efficient use. Below are some of those signals:

The AC is 15 or more years old

The raw age of your air conditioning system is a strong indicator of how much longer you can expect it to continue to work. Few central ACs can last much longer than 15 years—it’s the point when the strain on the system’s components catches up with it and repairs and maintenance make much less of a difference. We strongly recommend replacing an air conditioner this old. 

Rising summer electric bills

In the last one or two years of an air conditioning system’s service life, it will start to see a drop in its energy efficiency. This means you’ll see a rise in your electrical costs each summer that’s unconnected to electricity prices and how much you use the AC. This decline will only get worse and you’ll throw money away each time the air conditioner comes on. 

Dropping cooling capacity

The cooling capacity of an air conditioner is how much cooling it can create. When an AC is accurately sized for a house, it will have the right cooling capacity to lower indoor temperatures to a comfortable level without wasting energy. When this cooling capacity starts to drop and you notice your house no longer gets as cool as it used to (unless you keep lowering the thermostat), it’s time for a new AC. 

Excessive and expensive repairs

Needing to repair an AC each year is too often. And twice a year is a big warning that a replacement is the better choice. Also watch out for high costs of repairs: any single repair quote that’s more than half the cost of a new AC is not worth it. 

If you need help making the choice, you have a great resource available: us! We offer air conditioning service in North Potomac, MD and provide honest opinions on repairs and replacements. 

At Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing, we pledge to exceed expectations at every turn. Schedule AC service if you think you need a new cooling system.

Continue Reading

A Wheezing AC: Why Its Airflow Is Low

Monday, August 23rd, 2021
room-vent

Think of the ventilation system in your house like it’s a set of lungs. It’s not a clean comparison, but it has enough similarities for us to make a point. You want the air to flow through the ventilation system with as few obstructions as possible: air from inside the house flows through the return vents, passes through a filter, then moves through the AC to receive cooling, and then branches out along the supply vents to reach the room. If this airflow drops, it means the ventilation system is “wheezing”—something is keeping the flow through the ducts, filter, or AC from moving cleanly.

When you have a wheezing AC, it can mean several problems: a drop in cooling, a rise in bills, undue strain on components. You may need to call us for AC repair in Frederick, MD to solve the problem, although sometimes a simple explanation can account for the trouble. Below we’ll look at reasons for a decline in airflow in your AC.

Continue Reading

How Many Years Can My Air Conditioner Last?

Monday, June 28th, 2021
ancient-ac

Nobody wants to get caught with a failed air conditioning system during the summer. When it does happen, you hope that proper repairs can get the system going again—and often this is the case. When you’re looking for repairs for your air conditioning in Bethesda, MD, the team at Tuckers is ready to help.

But some AC failures may be permanent. If an air conditioner is too aged, a breakdown may signal that the best fix is to retire the AC. We want to help you avoid getting blindsided with an AC replacement by talking about how long you can expect your cooling system to last. Knowing when your air conditioning system is in its final years will help you arrange for a replacement at a convenient time.

Average AC Life Expectancy

Most manufacturers list the service life expectancy of central air conditioning systems as 10 to 15 years. You may have heard contractors say that an AC needs to be replaced every 10 years, but this isn’t necessarily true. Air conditioners reaching 15 years without experiencing severe drops in efficiency or performance are common when the system has regular maintenance. And that brings us to an important topic… 

What Can Affect AC Life Expectancy

There are several other factors that can change how long an air conditioner lasts. The biggest is the lack of regular maintenance. We talk about routine professional HVAC maintenance often on our site, but that’s because we know that it’s a vital service that saves our customers money and helps them protect their home comfort. 

Here’s an important fact to keep in mind: the majority of repairs the average central air conditioner needs are due to lack of maintenance. Now consider those repairs are also contributing to a decline in the general health of the AC, and you’ll see why neglecting maintenance can also cause an air conditioner to fail years early. Without maintenance, an air conditioning system’s lifespan can be cut in half. So instead of enjoying an AC for 10 to 15 years, you’ll only have it for 5 to 8 years. That’s a lot of lost years of potential cooling!

Another factor that can cause a rapid decline for an AC is ignoring repair needs for too long. We always urge our customers to be proactive when it comes to getting an air conditioner problem repaired: at the earliest sign something is wrong with your AC (loud noises, a drop in cooling capacity, a rise in humidity, uneven cooling, skyrocketing electric bills, tripped circuit breakers), call our technicians to investigate the problem and fix it. If a malfunction is allowed to continue, it will place stress on other components and age the system rapidly. If you end up with a burnt-out compressor, that usually means you need to replace the entire system.

Let Tuckers help you keep your AC running for as many years as possible with our repair and maintenance service. We’re also here when you’re ready to have a new system installed. 

Call Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing when you need AC service. We pledge to exceed expectations at every turn.

Continue Reading

Why Is My AC Shutting Off Too Early?

Tuesday, June 1st, 2021
woman-before-fan

Is this happening to you? You set your home thermostat for the usual daytime temperature when it’s hot outside. The AC turns on, you can hear the compressor running, cooled air starts to flow from the vents. Then the compressor shuts off, but the house hasn’t gotten cool enough. You fiddle with the thermostat, and maybe the AC starts to cool again, but then shuts off early, and so on… 

This is a problem since you’ll have to go through hassles and raise your electric bills to try to stay cool. Why is this happening, and what can you do about it? We’ll look into that below.

Continue Reading