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How to prolong the life of your air conditioner

As any homeowner here in Chicagoland knows, you don’t want to go through summer without a working air conditioner. Keeping the heat and humidity out of your home is a big deal, and it makes your air conditioner an essential part of your home.

In other words, you’ll want to do everything in your power to prolong your AC lifespan and put off the day you eventually need to replace it.

In this article, we’ll review how long air conditioners typically last and how you can potentially extend the lifespan of your system through preventative maintenance, energy-efficiency improvements, and taking quick action on repairs.

How long do air conditioners last?

Most air conditioners last between 12-17 years. Air conditioners on the high end of that scale—or those that exceed it and last 20+ years—have some things in common:

— They’re well-maintained by professionals
— They’re not subjected to extraordinary stress
— Their repairs are completed promptly by AC experts.

For air conditioners, age is more than just a number. But, it’s also not everything. When it comes to air conditioners, it’s not always about the years—it’s about the mileage. An air conditioner that runs constantly is going to wear down and “age” faster than one that runs less.

Later in this article, we’ll discuss several ways to improve your home’s energy-efficiency. This matters because it lowers the mileage put on your system.

You can’t control how many years pass, but you can potentially extend the lifespan of your AC by lowering the mileage put on it.

A King tech provides a homeowner with an update about their repaired air conditioner and what they can expect moving forward.

Schedule an annual tune-up

Without a doubt, this is the single-best thing you can do to extend the lifespan of your air conditioner. Just like your vehicle, your AC unit needs regular, professional maintenance to keep it running right.

Skipping annual tune-ups is just asking for trouble—both in the present, as you’re at greater risk of a breakdown, and in the future.

What makes seasonal tune-ups so important? It’s an opportunity for our technicians to take a close look at your system and determine if there are any issues that need to be addressed. Many AC repairs start small, and then—unnoticed—lead to a breakdown later.

Catching them early can reduce the stress on the system, helping it live a longer (and more productive!) life.

Every spring, have one of our certified technicians take a look at your air conditioner. Our 40-point AC tune-up ensures your system is ready for the summer ahead.

To learn more about our preventative maintenance—and to book an appointment—click the button below.

Improve your home’s efficiency

The less your air conditioner has to work, the better. Outside of keeping your home at an uncomfortable temperature, the best way to lighten the load is making your home more energy-efficient.

The less energy that’s wasted, the less your air conditioner has to run to keep your home habitable in the summer.

Add insulation to your attic

There’s a lot you can do to make your home more efficient. Start in your attic. If your home doesn’t have enough attic insulation, your air conditioner (and furnace!) will have to work overtime to keep up with what’s being lost through your roof.

Talk to our team to learn more about attic insulation and whether or not your home has enough of it.

Seal your air ducts

In a forced-air system, air ducts are used to transport cooled air from the AC blower to the different rooms of your home, where air is distributed through vents and registers.

However, ductwork is notoriously prone to damage, including pinholes, gaps, and cracks. These allow cooled air to escape into the attic before it even gets to you.

Have our team seal your home’s air ducts, and you’ll reduce your home’s energy waste by up to 30%!

Keep the heat out

As the summer sun beats down on your home, the air inside begins to heat up. Your air conditioner kicks on to cool things down. Obviously, you can’t do much about the sun itself, but you can shield your home from it.

Let’s start outside. Strategically planting shade trees around your property can block the afternoon sun from hitting your windows. It’s a game-changer for both your home’s efficiency and your comfort. Plus, as an added bonus, shade trees look great and will make your yard that much more beautiful.

Inside, hang sun-blocking curtains to cut down on the amount of light that gets into your home during the day.

If your home has single-pane windows, you may want to consider eventually upgrading to dual-pane ones: they’re far better at slowing the heat transfer process, and can vastly improve your home’s efficiency.

Be proactive when it comes to repairs

As a homeowner, you’ve got a lot on your plate. It’s natural to procrastinate on things that aren’t an immediate problem. Hearing a strange sound coming from your air conditioner? Well, it’s still running, right? You’ll deal with it over the weekend—maybe.

We’re only human. That weekend project quickly gets forgotten about. That strange noise you heard? It was actually a warning sign from your air conditioner. It stops working, and you now need emergency repairs. In delaying, however, you’ve put a lot of additional stress on the system, which is not ideal for its overall lifespan.

Our advice? If you know something’s wrong with your air conditioner, or even just have a gut feeling that something’s not right, call us. If you deal with AC problems right then-and-there, you can prevent a lot of headaches down the road.

Trust our experts

Here’s a final tip: never let anyone but a certified and experienced HVAC technician work on your system. Your AC repairs are too important to be left to your neighbor, Dave, or your cousin, Bob. Your AC unit—and its future longevity—is worth bringing in an expert.

At King, our AC technicians are certified and experienced professionals who know everything there is to know about air conditioners. They’ve worked with and studied every make and model. More than that, they understand air conditioning at a holistic level. When you bring them in for a tune-up or repair, they’ll help you not just with the system itself, but with your thermostat, air ducts, and more.

Need an AC expert here in Chicagoland? We’re on it! Click the button below and fill out the form to schedule service with our team.