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How to Avoid Air Conditioning Repair Costs (And Sweaty Summer Nights)

BY: Shannon Grilli |May 23, 2017

Our central air conditioners are a modern-day convenience that most of us take for granted. That is, of course, until they suddenly quit working on the hottest, sweatiest day of the summer (Isn't that always the way it seems to happen?), leaving us scrambling to find a repairman and dig out those old electric fans from the garage. But did you know that a simple tune up can prevent this sort of unforeseen disaster, and that it may even save you money in the long run?

Below, we explain why you might want to book an appointment with your local air conditioner repair company before anything actually breaks.

What makes up an air conditioner tune up?

Most people don't think twice about scheduling a tune up for their car, but an air conditioner is also a complex piece of machinery whose moving parts benefit from a little TLC. Here's a list of services typically included in a basic air conditioner tune up:

  • Inspection of the entire system, including blower belt, motor, fan blade, and all fittings
  • Cleaning of parts, including coils, condensate line, and air filter (or replace filter, if needed)
  • Lubrication of all moving parts
  • Check of all fluid and pressure levels
  • Inspection of wiring
  • Testing and calibration of thermostat controls
  • Thorough inspection of ductwork

How a tune up saves on air conditioning repair cost

If your A/C unit is relatively new and seems to be working well, you might be hesitant to dole out dough on a service call. But spending a few bucks now could actually wind up saving you more money in the long term—and not just because you're less likely to need a costly air conditioner repair.

Preventative maintenance

By checking for leaks and clogs in the system, cleaning or replacing dirty filters, and calibrating the thermostat, the service can ensure your unit runs as efficiently as possible. This translates to real money saved, since your air conditioner won't have to work as hard to cool your home. The actual savings will vary greatly from one home to the next, but many homeowners can expect to see a cost reduction of about 5 to 15 percent.

Extended service life

Additionally, regular tune ups may extend the life of your air conditioner, so you'll need to replace it less frequently. Considering the fact that a new central-air-conditioner unit can cost several thousand dollars, an annual tune-up fee of about $75–$100 (or less with Groupon!) seems like a worthwhile investment.