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DON’T IGNORE SIGNS OF REFRIGERANT LEAKS

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DON’T IGNORE SIGNS OF REFRIGERANT LEAKS

There simply is no other way to say it: leaks are bad. Here are a couple of things to remember when talking about leaks. First, they usually do not go away on their own. That is, they will continue to leak until the leak is stopped. Second, small leaks can turn into big leaks rather quickly. Given these characteristics, it is a good idea that once you spot a leak, you fix it as quickly as possible. Good examples are a car that is leaking oil or a roof that leaks whenever it rains. Left unchecked, both can lead to big-time damage and costly repair or replacement.

This is certainly true of a refrigerant leak in your home’s air conditioner. When your cooling system gets older or damaged, it can spring a refrigerant leak. Refrigerant is the fuel for your A/C and is evaporated, condensed and circulated throughout the system over and over again to provide cool air for your home. Refrigerant should never leak out. If it does, your system will tell you about it. You will begin to notice warmer air coming out of the vents or ice forming around the copper refrigeration lines or coils. Refrigerant leaks are usually caused when holes or cracks develop in the coils over time.

So, what do you do? First, like we said earlier, don’t just ignore it and hope that it stops. Then, shut off the system as frozen coils will stress your system and damage the compressor, which usually means an A/C replacement is your only option. Then, call the professional service technicians at Dixie Electric, Plumbing & Air, which has been servicing HVAC systems in the Montgomery and Auburn areas for 110 years.  Our professionally licensed A/C technicians will identify the cause of the leak, repair it, and recharge your system. Our technicians will also explain the importance or regular A/C maintenance and our custom maintenance plan options. Regular system maintenance not only prolongs the life of your system and promotes greater efficiency, but will also help prevent refrigerant leaks or detect them before they damage your system.

If the refrigerant leaks continue or if your system is damaged or old and inefficient, it may be time to replace it. And here’s another reason to ask our professionals about a system replacement estimate. Most older systems use R-22 refrigerant, which the EPA has determined is an environmental hazard. As a result, beginning Jan. 1, 2020, R-22 will be completely banned. R-22 is still allowed to service existing air conditioning systems, but it’s not being produced anymore. This means between now and the deadline, the cost for R-22 will climb higher and higher due to decreasing supply. Newer systems, which are already more energy efficient, are charged with more environmentally friendly refrigerants such as R-410A.

Your friendly service technician can explain all of this to you when the service call is made, or you call Dixie for more details on refrigerant and A/C maintenance plan options. We will also be happy to perform a system analysis to determine what system would be a good fit for your home. Don’t forget: Dixie offers a complete line of new, higher-efficiency systems. We also offer financing plans, so if your system needs to be replaced, let us provide an estimate for you. Call Dixie, and it’s done!

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