A central air conditioner is a large investment, so like any homeowner, you likely want yours to last as long as possible. Understanding the causes of premature air conditioner failure can help you get many more years out of your unit. Here are three causes of premature central AC failure that you should be aware of.
Even when your furnace filter is working properly, some amount of dust will make its way into your HVAC system. Dust that coats your AC coils, clogs the furnace filter, or coats internal components of your air conditioner can have a greater impact on your system than you might realize. Dust buildup can lead to overheating that greatly reduces the lifespan of your air conditioner.
To avoid damage to your air conditioner from dust, you should be sure to clean or replace your furnace filter at least once a month. This will allow the filter to remove contaminants from the air with maximum efficiency without becoming clogged.
Duct leaks are one of the leading sources of efficiency loss for modern HVAC systems, and they can also shorten the life of your system. Leaks in your ductwork can make it take much longer for your home to reach the temperature set on your thermostat. This in turn means that your air conditioner will run for much longer cycles, increasing the rate of wear and tear on the system.
While you can inspect exposed ductwork in your attic or basement for leaks, it is almost impossible for homeowners to identify leaks behind their walls. A professional duct inspection is the best way to ensure that there are no hidden leaks in your system.
Neglecting Annual Maintenance
Annual maintenance is the most important thing you can do to get the longest possible life out of your central air conditioner. Small components in an air conditioner can wear and stop performing efficiently without the homeowner realizing it. During a maintenance visit, an HVAC service technician will look for signs of hidden wear, make sure your AC is not low on refrigerant, and replace any failing components so you aren't caught off-guard by a breakdown.
One of the worst things about air conditioner breakdowns is that they can be unexpected and come at the least convenient times. With these tips, you can reduce the chances of premature AC failure so that you and members of your household can remain comfortable all year long.