Cooling FAQs: Air Conditioning Questions and Answers Every Homeowner Should Know

Air conditioning is all but standard in today’s homes, but most people still have questions about it. If you’re one of them, RJ Heating and Air Conditioning is a great resource for all things cool and comfortable. Our certified technicians have answered the air conditioner questions they’re asked most frequently—check out their answers below or call us for more information: 414-463-1140.

1. My air conditioning isn’t working—what should I do?

Before you call RJ Heating, check the basics: test the batteries in your thermostat, check for a tripped breaker or blown fuse, change your air filter, make sure the system is set to cool, and that the setting is at least three degrees below current room temperature. If it doesn’t respond, it’s time to call in our experts for a cooling system checkup.

2. How can I save on cooling costs this summer?

The simple answer is to use your air conditioner less and we’ve got some ways to do that without sacrificing comfort. Start by setting your air conditioner a bit higher than normal—your AC naturally removes some humidity, so you’ll feel cooler even at a warmer temperature. We also recommend using ceiling fans, closing blinds or curtains during the day, and using major appliances only in the evening. You can also save money by installing a programmable thermostat so you’re not paying to overcool an empty house while you’re at work or on vacation. Finally, never skip annual maintenance. This important service helps your air conditioner run more efficiently and need fewer repairs.

3. Do air conditioners cause summer colds?

Not directly but germs can thrive in a cool environment that’s not properly ventilated. A sudden, drastic change between indoor and outdoor temperatures may also trigger respiratory problems in some people but in general, the benefits of staying cool outweigh minor health risks. Let us maintain your system with a spring cleaning and fresh filter and you’ll feel more comfortable and energetic all summer.

4. Why is there ice on my air conditioner?

Your air conditioner should be cool to the touch, but not so cold that ice forms. If you notice frost or ice, turn off your system immediately to reduce the risk of serious damage. After it melts, replace the filter and restart your AC. If ice returns, call RJ Heating—insufficient ductwork, buildup in the unit, a broken blower, or leaking refrigerant could be to blame.

5. Should I cover my air conditioner in winter?

Air conditioners are built to withstand the elements, so there’s no need to cover your unit. In fact, we see more problems caused by turning on an air conditioner that’s covered and unable to get air than because of the cold or snow. Covering the air conditioner will trap moisture inside of it, making the unit rust and corrode. A cover won’t keep small animals away, either. If you’re worried about keeping leaves out of the AC, cover the top rather than the whole unit. Just be sure to schedule a spring cleaning before starting up your AC for the season to help it last as long as possible.

6. I don’t have central air—what about a window air conditioner?

We know that summer can be uncomfortable without air conditioning, but we’re not comfortable recommending window units for several reasons: they’re inefficient and loud, offer limited service, and can pose a security risk. Instead, ask us about a ductless split system. It’s a great option for custom, room-by-room cooling that fits even small spaces and requires only a small, safe, three-inch hole to connect the indoor and outdoor components.

Still have air conditioning questions? Want to know more about keeping cool this summer? Use our online form to send us your question—one of our comfort specialists will reach out with answers.