How Do You Know You Should Charge the Refrigerant in Your A/C?Winter will continue to make a few attempts at the cold weather here in Southeast Texas, but for the most part, we begin thinking of summer right after spring break. Which leads us to think about our HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) unit. Most home- and property-owners schedule an HVAC maintenance “tune-up” in spring and fall. If you don’t have a maintenance plan in place, you should check to see if your air conditioner is running properly before summer.

Clues You May Need to Charge the Refrigerant

How do you know if you need to charge the refrigerant in your air conditioner? Think of refrigerant as a heat exchanger rather than fuel. You don’t run out refrigerant like you run out of gas. You’re not supposed to lose a large amount of refrigerant, ever, but there are small leaks. Some clues you may be running low and need to charge the refrigerant include:

  • Ducts or registers are blowing warm air even when your air conditioner is on, and your thermostat is set to “cool.”
  • Water from condensation has puddled on the floor by your HVAC unit.
  • When AC is on, it seems like your home or building takes too long – or longer than normal – to cool down.
  • You can see an ice build-up on the copper lines from the AC to the indoor coil.
  • Your energy bills are higher than usual because your air conditioner has to run longer to cool rooms

What to Do

If you don’t add refrigerant when it’s needed, you’ll have an uncomfortable indoor temperature in summer, and you can also damage the air conditioner unit itself. Your local HVAC professional will check for refrigerant levels and leaks during your spring HVAC tune-up. But if you suspect an air conditioner refrigerant problem, you need to call your North Houston HVAC company as soon as possible.

Your air conditioning specialist has the right equipment to check refrigerant levels and can avoid over-charging your refrigerant, which is just as much of a problem as a refrigerant leak. Call 281.651.5484, Bradbury Brothers Heating & Air Conditioning, for more information!