An air conditioner is supposed to operate at peak performance for you and your loved ones to enjoy the full benefits of the unit during the scorching summer. But, that is not always the case, as problems tend to affect the efficiency of the AC system, leaving your home uncomfortable and increasing the risk of heat-related diseases or deaths.
EPA cites that more than 1,300 people have lost their lives due to extreme heat, hence the need to keep your family safe by calling for urgent air conditioning repair services when you have mild to severe HVAC issues.
One of the most common causes of AC issues is low refrigerant. The refrigerant, also known as a coolant, is a working fluid and a chemical mixture that moves between the compressor and condenser coils to complete a refrigeration cycle in heating and cooling systems. It works by converting from liquid to gas when absorbing moisture and vice versa when releasing heat from your house.
When the refrigerant level reduces, the air conditioner might malfunction or fail, leaving you with uncomfortable heat to endure. Air conditioning repair experts can use chlorofluorocarbons, Freon (R22), and Puron (R410A) refrigerants, whichever is less harmful to the environment, to refill the lost amount. Therefore, you should know the causes and effects of low coolant, which include:
Causes of Low Refrigerant
The only way the refrigerant can reduce in your HVAC unit is through leaking. The coolant leak is among the most reported causes of inefficient AC and heat pump systems.
Since the ACs and heat pumps are a closed loop system, the underlying cause is in the unit, and a qualified and extensively experienced air conditioning repair technician in San Antonio, TX, can identify the root cause and fix it. Some of the reasons behind the coolant leakages include:
Metal parts between the compressor and condensing coils, more so the copper tube walls are vulnerable to rust, leading to pinholes and cracks that allow the refrigerant to leak out of the system.
As the air conditioning equipment operates over the years, it is prone to wear and tear, making numerous parts, including the indoor coils, break down and give room for the coolant to escape.
Buying an AC with factory defects is another cause of refrigerant leaks. It is a problem that an installer should identify during installation to prevent unnecessary air conditioning repair expenses.
Weakening AC Joints and Connections
An aging air conditioner can end up having thinning out connections and joints that eventually break or create small cracks that lead to coolant leakages.
Improper Installation of Air Conditioner
The refrigerant can also leak due to an incorrect connection by a quack or an inexperienced HVAC contractor. The unskilled technician can miss fixing the parts of the unit accurately, leaving spaces for the refrigerant to escape.
An air conditioning repair professional can check for several signs of a leaking refrigerant in the unit, including rising electricity costs, poor cooling of your space, frozen evaporator coils, and weird hissing noises to help with the diagnosis.
Adverse Impacts of Low Refrigerant
An air conditioner with reduced coolant levels below the factory set limit can have numerous issues that are most costly to fix. The effects of the low refrigerant in the system include:
Inefficient Cooling of your Space
When the refrigerant is too low, you will notice hot and cold spots in your house, increasing temperature-related discomfort. The reduced coolant makes the system fail to absorb heat, leaving your rooms scorching hot, forcing you to go for a swim or prefer to visit a friend with a working AC unit during the day for a while.
As the refrigerant continues to reduce, the coils become too cold and eventually damage the heat exchange part in the system. The malfunctioned unit will need air conditioning repair services to restore its efficiency. The expert will also have to replace damaged heat exchange devices.
Another adverse effect of low refrigerant in the system is increasing humidity due to the inability of the coolant to suck the heat from your space. High humidity levels are dangerous in homes because they encourage mold growth that can cause substantial damage to furniture, wallpapers, and wooden floors.
Dampness in the air is something you should avoid at all costs if you don’t want to make mold thrive in your home. An experienced air conditioning repair technician in San Antonio, TX, understands the need to keep the indoor relative optimal humidity levels below 60 percent and can work promptly to charge or refill the refrigerant to the factory set limit.
The most adverse effect of low refrigerant levels in your air conditioner is compressor damage. Reduced coolant makes the compressor starve by not charging it, leading to overheating, burning out, and eventually malfunctioning.
The only way an air conditioning repair provider can fix a failed compressor is by replacing it with a new one. If your AC is too old, it is sharp-witted to replace your entire air conditioner.
Higher Discomfort Levels
Lastly, an air conditioner with low coolant cannot cool your home as it is. It creates uneven cooling indoors due to its inability to absorb heat. The more it leaks, the greater the discomfort in your San Antonio, TX, home because the heat exchange fails to control and maintain cold temperatures inside the house.
Having Low Refrigerant Levels in Your AC!
It is indisputable that an air conditioner cannot perform at its peak without refrigerant. Your air conditioner can have adverse effects if the coolant reduces, leading to hefty repair expenses and high utility bills. Since the fluid to replace is a chemical mixture, it is better left to professionals.
You can find the solutions to your malfunctioning system from bluefrog Plumbing + Drain + HVAC of San Antonio. We are a plumbing and HVAC company to satisfy its customers’ heating and cooling needs by providing top-notch services. Our Air conditioning repair experts are skilled, highly qualified, and extensively experienced in offering premium air and heating services. This includes expertise in repairs, replacement, and maintenance.