What’s an Overcharged Air Conditioner?

With summer temperatures continuing to linger, most of us are still using our air conditioners. And, they’re at the greatest risk of a malfunction now because they’ve been running continuously for months and have suffered the effects of monsoon storms. As we approach the end of the hot season, it’s a good reminder that you don’t want to ignore symptoms of a malfunctioning air conditioner. One such problem is too much refrigerant – also called an overcharged air conditioner.

Too Much of a Good Thing

Air conditioners are installed with a set amount of refrigerant. The term for this is its “charge.” Throughout the life of your air conditioning system, the charge should remain consistent. Because refrigerant is not a fuel, but rather a heat exchange fluid that enables your air conditioner to move heat from inside your home to the outside, it goes through a process of evaporating and condensing. In other words, it shouldn’t dissipate.

If there is more refrigerant in your air conditioning system than its factory charge, the pressure of the system will be thrown off and can damage its components. It can damage the compressor and cause the air conditioner to lose cooling power.

What Causes an Overcharged Air Conditioner?

There are definitely some household tasks that are ideal for do-it-yourselfers. However, adding refrigerant to an air conditioner is not one of them! The most common cause of a overcharged air conditioner is a homeowner who adds refrigerant because they are experiencing a loss of cooling. It’s a good rule of thumb that only licensed HVAC technicians should add refrigerant to an AC.

Along with DIYers who attempt refrigerant replacement, there is the problem of less than qualified technicians. They can also mistakenly add too much refrigerant and cause costly problems that you’ll end up paying for. This is exactly why it’s important to choose a licensed, experience HVAC professional for repairs. Don’t attempt to save money by doing repairs yourself or hiring an inexpensive, inexperienced contractor.

At Chandler Air, we carefully determine the cause of every air conditioner problem and know how to safely install refrigerant if and when it’s needed. Call us today to learn more about our professional services.

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