Air Conditioner FAQs

Top Notch Heating Cooling & Plumbing is the air conditioning expert for Kansas City Metro and Johnson County areas. Get answers from some of our most frequently asked questions about air conditioning systems.

Q: How long will my air conditioner last?

A: If you have your air conditioner properly serviced every year and you take good care of it, you can expect it to last about 12 – 15 years on average. That said, many factors affect the lifespan of your air conditioner, including the quality of the components (and their installation), weather conditions and the intensity of use.

Q: Why is ice forming on my AC refrigerant coil?

A: There are a number of things that could cause your AC coil to freeze up during the summer. The most common reason is dirty filters that block airflow through your system. This causes moisture to collect on the coil, which then freezes since the coil is so cold.

If your filters are not dirty, you may have a refrigerant leak or clog.

If your air conditioner has stopped working and you suspect it might be frozen, take the following steps:

  • Turn off the power.
  • Remove the cover panel from the evaporator and look for ice on the coil. If you do see any ice, move on to the next step.
  • Keep the AC power off to let the AC thaw, then let all the water drain away from the unit.
  • Try to remove any clogs from the AC condensate drain. Some drains have a vent tee that makes cleaning much easier – just find the white PVC drain coming out of the back of your air conditioner and carefully pour in a cup of bleach to flush out anything that could be blocking the drain. This will ensure any water that comes off the coils drains properly and doesn’t get stuck and cause your coil to freeze again!
  • Replace all the filters on your unit.
  • Turn your air conditioner back on. At this point, it should work fine – if it doesn’t, call Top Notch Heating, Cooling & Plumbing!

Q: Do I have to replace my AC coil when I replace my air conditioner?

A: It’s not required, but it’s highly recommended. Most air conditioners are optimized around a specific coil, usually with the same SEER. While they will run with a mismatched coil, they will usually be much less efficient. In addition, most older air conditioner coils may use R-22 refrigerant, which is no longer readily available– newer air conditioner coils use the environmentally friendly R-410a,and converting between the two is very difficult.

Q: When should I replace my AC?

A: Sometimes it’s easy to make the case for replacing an air conditioner–say, for instance, your air conditioner is 20 years old and has finally broken down beyond repair. Sometimes it’s not so easy, however. If your air conditioner isn’t in immediate danger of failure, there are a couple of things you should consider when thinking about replacement:

  • Energy costs – air conditioners are getting more energy efficient every day, and depending on how old your current air conditioner is, a new system could save you significantly. A Top Notch technician can help you calculate how much money you could save with an air conditioner replacement.
  • Return on investment – with significantly reduced energy costs, a new air conditioner could pay for itself in a matter of a few short years. Again, your air conditioning technician will help breakdown the payback period so you can decide if it’s worth it to schedule a replacement.
  • Inconvenient breakdowns – if your air conditioner seems to break down every time you run it hard (such as when it’s really hot out), this could be a sign that it’s not cut out to work properly whenever you need it.

Need Help With Your Air Conditioner?

Whether you have a leaky refrigerant coil, a busted air handler, or a malfunctioning compressor, call Top Notch today at 913-535-8002. Our expert air conditioner repair technicians will quickly find and diagnose your problems and fix them the first time so you can be comfortable all season long! In addition to AC repair we also provide AC maintenance, AC tune-ups, and AC installation services to homeowners in the Kansas City and Johnson County Metro areas.

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