Three AC Components To Check When You Buy An Old Home

If you're buying an old home that has an air conditioning system already installed, there are some things you should have inspected before you started using the air conditioner regularly. A little preventative inspection and maintenance can go a long way toward making sure you have a reliable air conditioner for the hot summer months -- and making sure you won't be surprised by any high energy bills.

Make Sure AC Is The Right Size

When it comes to the "size" of your air conditioning unit, this isn't referring to the physical dimensions of the condenser; rather, it refers to the air conditioner's cooling power. This size is measured in tonnage and is typically calculated using the square footage of your home. For example, a larger home will need a unit with more cooling power than a smaller home.

There's a reason this is important, and why bigger isn't always better: if your AC unit is too small, it will struggle to keep your house cool and drive up your energy bill by running so frequently. Likewise, if the AC unit is too large it will constantly be flipping on and off, which can be harmful to your condenser's components in the long term, shortening its lifespan.

When in doubt, have your AC unit inspected to make sure you have the right size. Do this before you do any other standard maintenance on the unit itself to save you some time and money.

Check The Electrical Work

An old air conditioning system, used or unused, should have its electrical components examined by an electrician before any prolonged use. An electrician can make sure the fuses are in good shape, that the circuit works properly and isn't overloaded or damaged, and that all the wiring in your system isn't broken or exposed.

Even if everything looks fine at a cursory glance, a more thorough investigation is well worth it. An unstable circuit or any other malfunctioning electrical parts can put strain on your system and either drastically decrease its lifespan or cause the unit to stop working completely.

Have The Ductwork Examined

The final important component of your HVAC system is your ductwork. If you're buying an older house, there are a few reasons getting the ducts checked is important. First, a technician can check for any leaks or gaps or loose parts that might let plenty of cool air leak before it ever reaches the inside of your room. Second, they can see if the ducts need to be cleaned – this may be necessary if there was any sort of pest infestation or mold growth.

This is also a great time to verify that every vent in your house is in working order and that cool air will make its way to every room. Either way, you'll be ensuring a steady and strong flow of air through clean ducts, resulting in an energy-efficient and reliable source of cool air come summer time in your new home.

For more information, contact your local HVAC repairs and maintenance contractors.