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

Getting to Know Your Air Conditioning System: 3 Basic Components

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

It is important that homeowners contact a licensed, qualified professional for any Northern Virginia air conditioning services they may need. However, it is also a good idea to get to know the way in which your AC operates a little better. You should never attempt to service your system on your own, but having a basic understanding of the components that make up this system is a great way to ensure that you are able to recognize any problems with its performance. Here are a few components of your air conditioning system that you may not be familiar with, but which are absolutely necessary for its successful operation. Contact Polar Bear today with any questions you may still have.


The compressor is located in the outer unit of your air conditioning system, generally speaking. It is the compressor’s job to squeeze the refrigerant when it arrives in order to pack the molecules closer together, increasing its energy and temperature. From here the refrigerant makes its way to the condenser.


The condenser, also housed in the outside unit of your air conditioner, is the part that has metal fins. These fins allow heat to dissipate fairly quickly, which in turn allows the refrigerant to reach a much cooler temperature. When the refrigerant leaves the condenser it is no longer a gas but a high-pressure liquid. From here, through a very tiny opening, this liquid enters the evaporator.


The evaporator in your AC system is where the pressure of the refrigerant drops, turning it into a gas. Heat is extracted from the air surrounding it as it evaporates, and a fan is used to circulate the air in your home blows air across the evaporator fins.  When refrigerant leaves the evaporator it heads back to the compressor to repeat the whole process.

To learn more about the components of your air conditioning system or to schedule any AC service, call the pros at Polar Bear. We are happy to help you better understand the way in which your air conditioner cools your home. Contact us today to speak with a Northern Virginia air conditioning expert on our team.

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Arlington, VA AC Tip: Reasons for Inefficient Air Conditioning

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

When the summer starts to heat up, most homeowners will start to run their air conditioners in Arlington, VA more often. This will usually cause a corresponding increase in energy usage as well. However, if you notice that your energy bills are increasing without an increase in usage, it could mean that your AC isn’t working efficiently. If you need any kind of air conditioning services in Arlington, VA, just call the experts at Polar Bear. We can fix any issue that you might be having and help you get your AC working more efficiently again quickly. Check out a few of the most common reasons why your AC might be running inefficiently.

  • Lack of maintenance – One of the best things that you can do for the efficiency of your air conditioner is to get it regularly inspected and maintained by a professional. During regular maintenance visits, your AC technicians will look for any small problems and issues that could be causing your AC unit to have to work harder than it should.  They will clean all of the parts and fix any problems which could help return some of the efficiency to your system.
  • Clogged air filter – Probably the most common cause of air conditioning inefficiency is a clogged air filter. Your AC has an air filter that is usually located near the return air vent that protects the inside from dust, dirt, insects and other pollutants. If the air filter doesn’t get changed regularly, it could get clogged and restrict the flow of air through the system. This will cause your AC to have to work harder to pull air through it and, thus, reduce the efficiency of the system. By regularly changing your air filter you could be able to make sure that your air conditioner continues to operate at peak efficiency.

For all your air conditioning installation, repair or maintenance in Arlington, VA, just call Polar Bear today. 

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How AC Maintenance Can Minimize Repairs

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

As the temperature starts to rise here in Virginia, more homeowners are starting to turn on their air conditioning systems. But all this sudden usage can cause a number of undesirable issues for your air conditioning system. Getting regular maintenance for your air conditioning system is a great way to potentially reduce the need for air conditioning repair. As your air conditioning system operates, it will develop small problems. These issues will likely grow and develop into larger, more costly repairs. Maintenance will not only save you money by reducing these repairs, but it can also help your AC run more efficiently.

  • Find problems early – Probably the most obvious way that regular maintenance might be able to reduce the need for repair is by allowing you to find problems early. During regular maintenance visits, our technicians thoroughly inspect and clean all of the he components of your air conditioning system. They will specifically look for any worn out, loose or dirty parts.
  • Find problems before they start – By getting regular air conditioning maintenance you could be able to find problems even before they start. During regular maintenance visits from Polar Bear, our experts will change and replace parts that often break. We’ll replace your air filter, your fan belt and any other parts that need to be changed. This could be able to keep them from ever developing problems.

For any McLean, VA air conditioning repair service you need, make sure that you call Polar Bear. We are passionate about our customers’ satisfaction and the level of workmanship that we do. 

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Air Conditioning Repair in Alexandria, VA: Common Problems with Packaged Systems

Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

A packaged air conditioning unit is unique because all of the system components are packaged together in a single unit. A typical split system, on the other hand, keeps the indoor air handler/evaporator and the outdoor condenser/compressor separate. A packaged system often sits on the roof or outside away from the home. Like all AC units, however, your packaged system may encounter problems during operation that will need to be fixed by a trained professional. While professional installation and routine, preventive maintenance go a long way towards ensuring that you stay cool and comfortable during the summer, some problem are inevitable. Call Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating today for quality air conditioning repair in Alexandria, VA.

Let’s take a look at a few common problems with packaged systems:

  • Compressor fault: Your compressor is the engine of the packaged system. It is responsible with pressurizing and circulating the refrigerant through the coils and valve. This is what you hear kick on during start-up. However, because it is so essential to effective operation, it is vital that any problems with its operation be professionally inspected and taken care of.
  • Thermostat miscalibrated: The thermostat is the user interface of the air conditioning system. Without it, the AC would not be able to sense what temperature it is—it would simply be an on/off operation. The thermostat allows you set a desire point for the AC, but if the thermostat is not calibrated to read the temperature accurately, then it will not work properly.
  • Dirty condenser coils: The condenser coils are responsible for dissipating the thermal energy absorbed from the indoor air. The exhaust fan assists with this. But if the coils have dirt or debris on them, then this dissipation process cannot possibly be efficient. It may lead to inadequate cooling and even warm air.
  • Low refrigerant: Your refrigerant charge should remain the same throughout the service life of your AC. But if there is a leak in the coils, your refrigerant level could decline, and this leads to higher energy expenditure as well as possible system damage.

Call Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating today for thorough air conditioning repair in Alexandria, VA.

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