Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc Blog : Archive for April, 2013

3 Common Air Conditioning Repairs in Arlington, VA

Monday, April 29th, 2013

As we gear up for the summer here in Arlington, VA, homeowners throughout the area are making sure that their air conditioning systems work well. During the off-season, your AC may have developed a few quirks, or perhaps you managed to stave off a problem at the end of the last cooling season that will now need to be dealt with. Whatever your situation, it’s critical that you hire a professional to make any necessary repairs on your AC, be it a central split or packaged system. We’d like to share with you 3 common air conditioning problems, with the hope that it might help you identify a minor issue before it balloons into a serious problem, or causes an inconvenient breakdown during the hottest days of summer. For air conditioning services in Arlington, VA, call Polar Bear Air Conditioning today!

  • Frozen evaporator coil: Your evaporator coil cools the warm air in your home. As it cools the air, the water vapor in the air condenses on the coils. If your AC has air flow problems or low refrigerant, that water vapor can freeze on the coils instead of draining, which prevents your AC from cooling effectively.
  • Overheated compressor: If there is any disruption of the airflow within your AC, then it can cause serious problems in other areas of the system, not to mention poor energy efficiency. For example, if your air filter is clogged with dust and debris, it can cause your system to work harder, so much so that your compressor may overheat. Your compressor is the major engine of the cooling cycle; it pressurizes the refrigerant, causing it to circulate throughout the coils. If it overheats, you may have to be replace it.
  • Condensate drain leak: There is a condensate drain pan fitted beneath your evaporator coil that catches the water vapor condensation on the external surface of the coils. Over time, or because of physical damage, it may begin to leak into your air handler, or outside the indoor unit.

Whatever your AC problem, we are here to help. When you need excellent air conditioning repair in Arlington, VA, call the experts at Polar Bear Air Conditioning.

Continue Reading

Washington DC Air Conditioning Guide: Why Won’t My AC Turn On?

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

As the cooling season approaches in Washington, DC, homeowners and tenants throughout the area are turning on their air conditioning systems to ensure that they are ready to go for the hot months. We rely a lot on our air conditioning systems, and it’s no wonder that with all the use they get over the years, that there may come a time when they need professional repair. One of the most common problems that we encounter is when a client’s AC won’t turn on. In this post, we’d like to review some possible causes for this problem. For Washington, DC air conditioning service, call the experts at Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating today!

  • Thermostat fault: First, you should double-check your thermostat. Make sure it’s set to a temperature that calls for cooling, and that the fan is on. If this doesn’t change anything, then there may be a connectivity issue between it and the air handler, which sends cool air into your ductwork to be distributed into your living spaces. The thermostat may also be improperly calibrated, so that it’s not sensing the temperature of your indoor air properly.
  • Electrical problem: If your AC won’t turn on, the problem is likely electrical in nature. There are various control switches to your AC, both at the air handler and the outdoor condenser/compressor. Make sure that both are in the on position. You should also check for a blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker, both of which can affect the power supply to your AC.
  • Condensate drain pan overflow: Often, air conditioners have a water overflow shutoff switch that cuts off the power should water leak into the air handler. This is to prevent electrical damage. Because your evaporator coil causes water vapor to condense on the surface of its coils, there is a condensate drain pan located just beneath them to catch and drain any water away from the mechanical parts of the air handler. If this overflows because of a clog in the drainpipe, then your AC may automatically shut itself off.

We hope this gives you some idea as to the range of problems that can cause an AC to fail to turn on. For more information, or to schedule Washington, DC air conditioning service, call Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating today! 

Continue Reading

Washington D.C. Air Conditioning and Air Quality Issues

Monday, April 15th, 2013

Air conditioning and air quality often go hand in hand, just like heat and humidity. In Washington D.C., we rely on our air conditioning to provide crisp, cool air so that when we come home after a long day, we can enjoy respite from the hot sun outside. Your air conditioner provides some dehumidification in the process, and its air filter does remove some of the pollutants that can find their way into your home living space, but in order to improve your total comfort, you need to ensure that your indoor air quality is high during the cooling season. In this post, we’d like to address this relation by recommending some ways you can improve both your air conditioning and your indoor air quality. For Washington D.C. air conditioning services, call the experts at Polar Bear Air Conditioning today!

  • Air filtration: Your air conditioner’s air filter is designed to prevent dust and debris from ruining the mechanical parts of your air conditioning system. While this provides some air filtration for your indoor air, it is not designed to provide comprehensive air filtration, which may be necessary if your home suffers from contaminants and pollutants, such as pollen, dander, bacteria, and dust mites. Consult with an air filtration and air cleaner expert to see which whole-home option would be best for you.
  • UV germicidal lights: Ultraviolet light destroys microorganisms before they enter your ductwork. UV germicidal lights are a relatively simple device, although they require professional installation to work correctly. They are installed directly into your air handler.
  • Enroll in a maintenance program: Professional inspection, cleaning, and tune-ups are the best ways to keep your air conditioning working well and your air quality high. By enrolling in a preventive maintenance program, you are ensuring that your system is always working as efficiently and effectively as possible.

While our modern homes are energy efficient, they often prevent adequate ventilation. The EPA lists indoor air pollution as one of the top 5 environmental risks to our health. For Washington D.C. air conditioning and indoor air quality services, call the experts at Polar Bear Air Conditioning today!

Continue Reading

Can I Save Money with a Heat Pump in Arlington, VA?

Monday, April 8th, 2013

Heat pumps make a great addition to any home in Arlington, VA. They are widely recognized to be one of the most energy efficient ways to cool your home, and they also work during the heating season to provide warmth and comfort. This type of flexibility allows you to save money. If you’re in the market for a new air conditioning system, consider a heat pump. Most importantly, though, make sure you opt for reliable and professional installation so you know your system will work well for years to come. If you need a heat pump in Arlington, VA, call the pros at Polar Bear Air Conditioning today!

Let’s take a look at how a heat pump works. Heat pumps work just like air conditioners. They extract warm air from your home, blow it over the cool refrigerant in the evaporator coils, and return the cooled air into your home. The refrigerant has now been pressurized by the warm air and is sent through to the compressor, where the heat exhausts outside. The cycle then repeats itself. The essential principle behind the heat pump is heat transfer, although we often think of it merely as cool air entering our homes.

But heat pumps are more versatile than your average air conditioner. They are equipped with a device that allows the refrigerant to work in reverse, so that they can draw heat from even the coldest temperature outside to warm the cold air removed from the inside of your home and thereby heat your home. This type of versatility makes them incredibly energy efficient. And that means you save money.

One of the most important things to keep in mind as you shop for heat pumps is their size. For your heat pump to operate correctly, it needs to be properly sized to your unique living space. This requires professional assessment not only of the volume of air in your living space, but perhaps also considering the placement of the heat pump equipment. Professional installation will go a long way towards making sure that your heat pump continues to save you money on your energy bill throughout the year. For more information about our Arlington, VA heat pump and air conditioning services, call Polar Bear Air Conditioning today! 

Continue Reading

How Ducts Can Affect Air Conditioning Efficiency in Alexandria, VA

Monday, April 1st, 2013

Central air conditioning system are very popular. Many homeowners fail to realize, however, just how important the condition of their air ducts is to the operation of their air conditioning system. Just because your air ducts are tucked away behind your walls and in other inaccessible areas does not meant that you can afford to ignore them. In fact, your Alexandria, VA air conditioning system can be seriously compromised by problems with your air ducts. Consider this information from Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating about how air ducts can affect your air conditioning efficiency in Alexandria, VA.

One of the most obvious ways that air ducts can affect the efficiency with which your air conditioning system operates is if they are damaged. Improperly installed, torn or otherwise compromised air ducts will allow conditioned air to leak out of the system before it arrives at its destination. This causes a few different problems. First of all, if this air keeps escaping then your air conditioning system is going to need to consume more energy in order to replace that which has been lost. This is a big problem in and of itself, but there is another way in which this can wind up costing you money. Forcing your air conditioner to operate with this extra strain on it can lead to damages within your system.

Dirty air ducts are another problem than can affect the efficiency of your air conditioning system. While it may take a pretty serious buildup of dirt and debris to really inhibit airflow in your air ducts, there are your filters to think about.  If there is a lot of dust and other pollutants circulating through your ductwork then the filters can restrict airflow, reducing efficiency. Also, the pollutants can make their way into your HVAC equipment and lead to complications therein.

For more information about the importance of the condition of your ductwork, call Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating. We are happy to help you better understand how ducts can affect air conditioning efficiency in Alexandria, VA. Call today to learn more.

Continue Reading