Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Air Conditioning’

Which Air Conditioning Services Do I Need?

Monday, August 11th, 2014

The modern air conditioner is a complex and intricate appliance. Servicing it requires a technician with special training and professional-grade tools. It isn’t a job you can do on your own, so when you need assistance with air conditioning in Radnor, PA, make sure you call experienced professionals for the job.

But what services should you have for your air conditioning system, aside from the work done to install it in the first place? We’ll go over the two services you should schedule for your air conditioning if you want it to work effectively and efficiently for many years.

To handle all necessary AC services, look to one company: Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling. We have helped homeowners in Bucks and Montgomery Counties stay cool since 1976.

The 2 key air conditioning services you need

  • Regular maintenance: Similar to car, an air conditioner needs regular “tune-ups” to ameliorate the effects of wear and tear and aging. You need to schedule a maintenance visit from a professional technician once a year. Without this regular work, an AC will start to lose efficiency and be prone to more repairs. A complete inspection and tune-up for an AC should take about an hour, and it will cover all the components of the system: coils, compressor, motors, electrical system, condensate drain, ventilation, thermostat, etc. The technician will handle adjustments and tightening connections, and clean off the coils and the condensate pan. If the technician catches any spots where the system requires repairs, he or she will help you arrange for the necessary repair work.
  • Targeted repairs: Although today’s air conditioners are built to high standards, no machine can ever be 100% repair-free. Eventually, you will need to call for repairs from a specialist. If you have regular maintenance done, the technicians will usually catch the problems in time before they start to cause serious malfunctions. But whenever you sense something amiss with the AC, such as strange noises from the cabinets or a drop in cooling power, you need to call for a repair technician to locate what is wrong and then fix it. Ignoring repair issues will lead to poor performance and likely full system breakdown.

If you combine these two services—maintenance once a year, repairs done promptly as needed—you should have an air conditioner that will exceed its estimated lifespan and deliver you many years of quality cooling.

Call us today to get started with maintenance, and keep our contact information handy for repairs. Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling offers same-day service for repairs as well as maintenance plans for all major brands, makes, and models of air conditioning in Radnor, PA.

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Ways to Avoid Paying Too Much for Air Conditioning This Summer

Friday, April 18th, 2014

Spring is here and that means summer can’t be too far behind. In Lansdale, air conditioning systems are an absolute godsend in keeping high temperatures at bay. But because you will probably use your air conditioner every day, monthly bills are apt to be higher than normal too. That’s to be expected of course, though the high temperatures might hide some unnecessary waste in the bill. You’re already paying a lot, so you shouldn’t have to pay any more than is absolutely necessary.  Here are some ways to avoid paying too much for air conditioning this summer.

  • Schedule a maintenance session. Air conditioning systems build up dust and debris over time, which can increase friction and wear and tear on moving parts. Loose fittings, low refrigerant levels and unclean filters can also interfere with your air conditioner’s ability to do its job. A maintenance session can address all of that, improving efficiency and helping your unit perform at its very best.
  • Consider a cost-saving upgrade. Smart thermostats and zone control systems can help you cut down on monthly costs considerably, the first by analyzing your cooling habits and helping you make the most of them and the second by allowing you to turn off the cool air in parts of the house you aren’t using. Over time, the savings could very well pay for the cost of the upgrade.
  • Add insulation. Most people think of insulation as something that keeps the heat in, but the same principle works for keeping heat out as well. If you can, add more to your home before summer hits. You’ll be surprised how much you can save.

This comes on top of more straightforward ways to avoid paying too much for air conditioning this summer, such as dressing in light clothes and setting the thermostat for a few degrees warmer than you otherwise might. Here in Lansdale, air conditioning maintenance and upgrades can be performed by the experts at Carney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling. Give us a call to make an appointment and let us show you what we can do!

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Why You Need Regular AC Maintenance

Friday, April 11th, 2014

Here’s something you should have on your spring “to do” list: “Schedule regular air conditioning maintenance.” An annual inspection and tune-up for your air conditioner is vital for it effective and efficient operation, and the best time to have it done is during the spring. That way, the AC is prepared for the upcoming change to summer, and you can take advantage of the slower time of the year for HVAC technicians to schedule a convenient time for uour maintenance visit.

In Blue Bell, PA, air conditioning maintenance from Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling will make sure your AC is ready for summer, and that you receive the maximum value from the system. Our air conditioning technicians are all EPA-certified and have the necessary skills to make sure your cooling system is operating at maximum efficiency.

Why Regular AC Maintenance Is a Necessity

  • Catch potential repair needs: A key part of maintenance is prevention. Many faults inside an AC will not make themselves immediately obvious to you, but maintenance technicians know how to spot them. The technician will discover places where wear and tear in the system is developing into a problem and notify you of it so you’ll have time to fix it before it becomes worse—or before it causes the system to break down entirely and require more expensive repairs.
  • Increase system efficiency: As an air conditioner runs over a season, it will pick up dust and dirt. This will cause the AC to gradually run less and less efficiently, since it will strain to keep your home cool. This will mean higher bills. Here’s something to keep in mind: the average AC system in Bucks and Montgomery County runs for approximately 2,000 hours a year… more than enough time to build up plenty of dust and dirt contamination and deterioration on parts. Unless you have the system regularly tuned-up and adjustments and cleaning done, you can expect a continual decline in energy efficiency.
  • Ensure long system lifespan: Any air conditioning system comes with a manufacturer’s estimated lifespan, which is often in the 12–15 year range. However, this lifespan is only possible if the system receives regular maintenance. If you neglect routine visits to tune-up the system, all those 2,000 hours of work each year will shorten the AC’s lifespan. This is the biggest expense you can encounter with a cooling system: needing to prematurely replace it with a new one.

Sign Up for Maintenance Today!

When you sign up for a Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling maintenance plan, you will get more than regular visits that protect your AC’s operation. You also receive “Front of the Line Service” to assure that during busy times of the year, you’ll receive priority emergency service from your technicians. Our technicians can handle all AC brands, makes, and models. Put your trust in us for your air conditioning maintenance in Blue Bell, PA.

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Air Conditioning Guide: Signs of an Overloaded Compressor

Monday, September 9th, 2013

You may have heard mention of the “compressor” in your air conditioning, but what does it actually do? In simple terms, the compressor is the “engine” of your AC. It compresses the refrigerant that comes from the indoor evaporator coils before it travels to the condenser coils, making the refrigerant both hot and highly pressurized. This is an essential part of the cooling cycle.

If your compressor overloads, it can cause serious trouble for your system. In this post, we’ll run through a few of the signs that your compressor is working too hard and possibly heading for a burn out. For Lansdale, PA air conditioning service, trust Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling for expert knowledge:

  • Noisy operation: You turn on your AC, and instead of the whir of soothing white noise you expect, you hear a strange buzzing or clanking sound. Although a number of components in your unit can cause unusual sounds if they aren’t working properly, these specific sounds often point to the compressor.
  • Increased electrical bills: You probably know what to expect on your energy bills during a season—so if you notice an unexplained uptick in what you’re paying for electricity during the month, it may mean that the compressor is draining too much power to do its job. The compressor requires the most energy of any part in your AC to run. Getting the compressor repaired can not only prevent failure, but also save you money.
  • Circuit breaks and blown fuses: A compressor that is working too hard can cause a power surge that may trip a circuit breaker. This will happen soon after the compressor starts operating, so if you experience trouble with circuit breaker or blown fuses not long after you switch on your AC, the compressor is the likely culprit.

It is a smart idea to call in an HVAC technician to deal with an overworked compressor. Trying do-it-yourself tactics can not only damage your AC, but pose the danger of electrical shock. A professional can safely perform the diagnosis and help determine if your compressor needs repairs or replacement. When you need this work done, call Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling’s Lansdale air conditioning experts—we’ll give you the service satisfaction you need to keep you cool.

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What is an Expansion Valve?

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

When discussing air conditioning systems, you may her the term “expansion valve” used from time to time. It plays a vital role in the process of cooling your air, but you may not be familiar with its particular function. In New Hope, PA, air conditioning systems are a serious concern, since Pennsylvania summers can be hard with all the heat and humidity. The more you understand about components like the expansion valve, the better your grasp on how air conditioning works.

At the heart of your air conditioning system is a closed loop system that circulates refrigerant. The expansion valve plays a key role in this loop. The refrigerant arrives at the value in a highly pressurized liquid state. The valve is connected to the system’s evaporator coils. When the refrigerant enters the coils, it evaporates, absorbing heat out of the nearby air in the process. A blower then pushes the cool air into the ductwork, where it travels throughout your home.

The valve regulates the amount of refrigerant that is let into the evaporator coils. As the liquid moves from a high pressure state to a low pressure state, it evaporates and absorbs the heat from the surrounding air. Only a precise amount of refrigerant will work properly, so the valve’s purpose is extremely important. And naturally, when the valve become clogged or damaged, it can wreak havoc with the AC unit’s ability to cool the air. If refrigerant can’t enter the coils, no cooling will take place. If it enters in the wrong proportions, it will cause problems with the pressure leading to too much or too little cooling, and possibly damage other components as well.

Repairing or replacing an expansion valve is the purveyance of trained professionals. They can ascertain the problem, effect a repair, or replace it with a new valve while ensuring that it fits in with the surrounding components the way it should. Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling can address problems air conditioning units in New Hope, PA and throughout eastern Pennsylvania. Call us today to set up an appointment.

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Does Air Conditioning Reduce Indoor Air Quality?

Monday, August 12th, 2013

The hot, muggy summers in Lansdale, PA make air conditioners an absolute necessity. What better way to avoid climbing temperatures than with a cool comfortable living space to come home to at the end of each day? Some homeowners may have concerns about their indoor air quality as well, and wonder if an air conditioning system will reduce the quality of their indoor air. The answer depends on how regularly the air conditioning unit is maintained.

Dust and dirt particles are a fact of life, and may build up in your air conditioning system over time.  The amount will increase if you have pets that carry dander, if your indoor carpeting goes a while between cleanings, and if you track in a lot of dust and dirt from the outside. To counteract this, air conditioning units come equipped with air filters which catch dust and other particles, preventing them from building up in the system itself.

Here’s where proper maintenance enters into the equation. If you change your air filters regularly, they won’t become clogged with particles, and the quality of your indoor air should remain high. In addition, a higher quality filter tends to do the job better than a cheap or flimsy filter. Similarly, regularly scheduled maintenance from a trained professional can keep your AC unit clean and free of dust. You can augment that with routine ductwork cleaning to keep debris from building up in your ducts. In both cases, an expert can also spot potential problems, such as cracks of fissures that may allow particles to enter the system, before they become overwhelming.

If, on the other hand, your air conditioning system doesn’t receive any significant upkeep, then the amount of dust in the system will probably lower your indoor air quality.  If you’re concerned about the quality of your air – especially if you have allergies or similar issues – the give Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling a call. We can set up a regular maintenance schedule, and handle air conditioning issues in Lansdale, PA and throughout the surrounding communities. With regular service, we can help ensure that your indoor air quality stays where it should be.

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Air Conditioning Repair: What AC Noises May Mean

Monday, July 15th, 2013

Does your AC make a strange or unexpectedly loud noise during operation? Has it gotten louder over the years and is now unbearable during operation? While you can expect a certain amount of noise from your air conditioner, if it begins to make any strange sounds, you should get in touch with your HVAC technician. In some sense, you should see that sound as an advantage—many problems around the home do not let themselves be known until they are too far gone. If you view that noise as a warning signal that your AC needs the care of a professional air conditioning repair technician in Doylestown, PA.

Let’s take a look at a few sounds that you may come across during the service life of your AC:

  • Grinding: This is often a fairly grating sound, one that is immediately recognizable as an indication of damage. A grinding sound in your AC is probably related to dried-out bearings in your blower motor assembly. When dirt, dust, and grime enter into your motor, they can cause friction and overheating. If you think this is what’s going on, make sure you turn your AC off to prevent any further damage.
  • Buzzing; If you hear a buzzing sound around your AC, you might have a serious electrical problem. It might indicate an arcing issue, which can be hazardous to you and the integrity of your AC if not taken care of properly.
  • Loud banging: If it sounds like two pieces of metal are striking against one another in your AC, then that’s probably what’s going on. You may have a fan blade that has come loose or some other loose part that is being blown around your system.

It’s necessary to have a professional diagnose the sound that your AC is making so that you can be sure that the root of the problem is taken care of. Call Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling today for all of your Doylestown, PA air conditioning repair needs. We can make sure that your cooling system gets the attention it deserves.

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Dirty Air Filters and Air Conditioning Repairs

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

Your air conditioning system has an air filter that is there to protect the moving parts on the inside from dirt, dust and other debris. If you don’t change that air filter on a regular basis it can cause problems with your AC. If your air conditioning system is having any issues, call the friendly experts at Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling. We have many years of experience working with all different kinds of air conditioning systems. We wanted to put together some of the common issues that can be caused by allowing your air filter to get clogged.

  • Not enough cooling – If your air conditioning system isn’t producing enough cooling a very common cause of that could be a clogged air filter. If your air filter is full of dust it will restrict the flow of air into your home and cause you to be uncomfortable.
  • Increased repair – If you have a clogged air filter it will cause your air conditioning system to have to work harder to pull air through the system. This will put more strain on your equipment and could cause other AC problems to develop.
  • Increased energy usage – If your air conditioning system has to work harder to pull air into the system then it will need to use a lot more energy.
  • Reduced lifespan – When your air conditioning system has constantly run to cool your home because of a dirty filter, there will be more wear and tear on the system. This could cause parts of the equipment to prematurely wear out, and it could even cause the entire system to break down permanently.

Call the Lansdale, PA air conditioning repair specialists at Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling today if you have any questions! 

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Using Your Air Conditioning System Efficiently

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

One of the most frequently asked questions we get during the hot summer months concerns how to use your air conditioning in Lansdale, PA more efficiently. While we cannot control the seemingly ever-rising costs of energy, we can control how we use that energy to keep our homes cool, crisp, and refreshing. And that’s what today’s post will be about. There is a great variety of ways you can use your AC efficiently, and we’ll only be able to touch on the topic only briefly today. If you’re in need of professional air conditioning services in Lansdale, PA, do not hesitate to get in touch with one of the friendly technicians at Carney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling today.

  • Clean and replace your air filter on a regular basis: We can’t emphasize this simple task enough. Too many perfectly good ACs are ruined every year because of homeowner neglect. While you rely on the professional skills of your technician for the majority of maintenance duties, cleaning and replacing your air filter is one of the few things you can do, and it’s critical to the longevity of your AC as well as to the energy efficiency with which it operates. A dirty or clogged air filter can neither prevent the accumulation of dust and debris on sensitive mechanical components nor allow cool air to pass uninhibited.
  • Enroll in a preventive maintenance program: Prevention is incredibly important as a way to stave off unnecessary repairs and premature replacement. Routine professional maintenance includes comprehensive inspection to recognize problems before they start, cleaning to ensure that your system operates well, and adjustments to ensure that it’s operating efficiently and safely.
  • Install a programmable thermostat: If you have a manual thermostat, you’re missing out on the benefits of a digital programmable model. It allows you to boost energy efficiency without sacrificing comfort when you create a schedule of cooling that works around your lifestyle. Automatic, gradual cooling also cuts down on drastic manual changes that can cause wasteful energy consumption.

If you’re looking for more ways to make your air conditioning in Lansdale, PA more energy efficient, call Carney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling today.


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Why Cover Your Air Conditioner During the Winter?

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Many air conditioner owners in Maple Glen wonder how best to care for their outdoor condenser units during the winter months that they are not in use. It can be a bit confusing, as everyone seems to have different opinions. Some people claim that wrapping your air conditioner is of utmost importance, while others claim that it can actually harm your air conditioning system. Ultimately the importance comes down to location of your home and the conditions of the environment, but at Carney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling we believe offering some sort of protection over your condenser unit is a good idea. The important thing is how you do it.

If you’re  concerned about debris falling into your unit, such as pine needles, ice or leaves, simply cover your condenser unit with a piece of plywood. Put a brick on top to hold it in place, and you’re all set. This will also keep rain and snow out, as well as corrosive salt water for those that live near the ocean. If you want to further protect your unit you may opt for a full cover, but it is important that you give this some further consideration.

If your concerned about the fins or casing of your condenser unit and must use a full cover, be sure that it is made of a breathable material. Sure, you may have some large trash bags in the garage that would cover it, but this can actually do more harm than good. Using plastic or other non-breathable materials to cover your air conditioner can trap moisture inside the unit. When the sun is shining during the winter the cover will heat up, making it much warmer inside the plastic and creating the perfect environment for rust and mildew to develop. Plus, this warm area makes a tempting place for rodents to spend the winter. Many electricians spend some time in the spring rewiring systems that have had their wiring chewed through.

Before you take any steps in protecting your air conditioner – consult your owner’s manual or as your Maple Glen heating and air conditioning contractor.  Most importantly, protect your air conditioner following the passing of winter in the most reliable way possible. Call a professional air conditioning service provider for regular maintenance service before putting your air conditioner into regular use. This is the best way to make sure that your AC has made it through the winter unscathed by debris, moisture, rodents and anything else. Call Carney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling  today with any further questions you may have about keeping your air conditioner safe during the off season.

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