Need to topup your aircon gas? To have peace of mind, it is recommended that all air conditioner systems undergo a regular maintenance program. Results have shown that periodically serviced air conditioning unit, besides having a much longer lifespan, also performs better. An air conditioner that is subjected to regular maintenance also tends to be more energy efficient than one that does not. Small problems discovered during servicing can also be earlier treated before they turn into bigger ones.
Installing air conditioning system is a big investment. Naturally, it makes better sense to want to protect your investment by prolonging your system’s longevity and making certain that all the units are operating economically and efficiently.
When being serviced by a professional, one common item that does not fail to fall under their check list is the topping up of gas for the air conditioning system. So what does that mean to you when people mention that gas level is low and topping up is necessary? Is re-gassing really needed and how often do you have to do that?
Unknown to many people, air conditioners do not take up refrigerant (commonly known as Freon), as a car would take up oil. The truth is, under ideal conditions, changing or filling up of refrigerant is really not necessary. A low gas level means that in all likelihood, there is a small leakage somewhere in the system, which should be first repaired before re-topping with gas. Almost all recently produced air conditioners have connections that are welded to prevent leaks. Older units, on the other hand, have mechanically connected fittings which over the years, tend to be loosened by vibrations that then results in leakages, followed by air conditioning system failure.
Gas/Freon leaks are problematic because:
1. Efficiency of air conditioner is considerably reduced
2. The compressor, which is the heart of the air conditioner, can become overheated and eventually breakdown. The refrigerant gas, Freon, under ideal condition cools the compressor effectively. In a leak situation, the lowered gas level cannot cool the compressor sufficiently, resulting in premature failure of the compressor. A complete replacement of the compressor is often necessary. Sometimes, replacement of the whole condensing unit will also be required. Both these items happen to be relatively costly.
3. Evaporator coil can turn frozen due to low gas level, causing it to freeze up eventually.
4. The refrigerant gas, Freon, is an Environmental Protection Agency controlled substance and is considered hazardous when exposed to the environment.
It is worth remembering that refrigerant gas (Freon) within an air conditioning system is not being consumed when the system is utilized. Therefore, re-gassing is really not needed if the working conditions are perfectly alright.
Never ever attempt these servicing tasks yourself, get the help of your trusted servicemen during their servicing visits. They are the professionals trained with the relevant skills to do these jobs…safely and efficiently.