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Late Summer vs. Your Air Conditioner: A Few Things to Know

thermometer-going-redHot weather is hot weather as far as your air conditioning is concerned—or at least this is what most people think when they think about their AC system at all. The air conditioner does its job as well as it can against the heat.

But this isn’t 100% true. An air conditioner is like any complex appliance: it starts to wear down with use, and changes in external conditions can make it more difficult to do its job and put it at higher risk of failure. This is the situation most air conditioning systems are in during the late summer. This is a time of year when we caution our customers to be on the watch for signs they need Durham air conditioning services. Just because fall is around the bend doesn’t mean you can relax about the performance of your air conditioner. Below are some key facts to know about this time of year.

Your AC is at a higher chance of a malfunction

The reason an air conditioner is in riskier territory in late summer is because of the accumulation of stress during the past few months and the often intense heat that arrives in August and September. If you had your AC tuned-up and inspected in spring—which you should do every year—this is the point where the benefits of maintenance can start to give way. An AC that has run almost daily for more than a month is more likely to have a motor burn-out or suffer from another stress-based mechanical failure.

Greater heat means your AC is more likely to freeze

“Wait … how does that work?” Yes, this sounds strange, but it’s true. The evaporator coil in the air conditioner may freeze at the end of summer if the system has overworked to the point where it can’t absorb sufficient heat along the evaporator coil. And when that happens, the remaining refrigerant in the coil will stay too cold and cause moisture to freeze. The coil can also freeze if the blower motor in the air conditioner starts to fail from all the stress.

Electric components in the air conditioner are sensitive to extreme heat

The most common types of AC malfunctions are electrical, and electrical components such as capacitors are sensitive to high heat levels. Capacitors usually need to be replaced before the end of the air conditioner’s service life, so you can expect at some point during the end of a summer season to need to have new capacitors put in so the motors can keep working.

Humidity also takes its toll

When humidity is high, as it often is in Raleigh during the end of the summer, it can overwhelm the air conditioner. An AC removes small amounts of moisture as it runs, but excessive humidity can lead to problems with the air conditioner’s condensate system becoming clogged, which will trigger a limit switch and shut down the AC.

If you think your AC is facing tough times at the end of the summer, get in touch with us right away. We’re problem-solvers and we work fast to see you enjoy the best performance from your cooling system.

Comfort Master Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. serves the Triangle Area of Raleigh, NC. Call for 24/7 emergency air conditioning repair and we’ll get your house cool once more.

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