HVAC units are reliable and designed to operate for decades. Even the best units are not flawless, and small problems eventually build into large problems. Typical maintenance issues include leaking coolant, compressor wear, and leaking of the air ducts. All these difficulties can be resolved by a trained and committed air conditioning maintenance service.
It is best to inspect a home air conditioner every year. While they are solid machines, prevention allows the owner to reap the full lifespan of the unit. Small repairs can create big savings for the annual energy budget, because air conditioners become less efficient as their coolant leaks and becomes dirty.
The coolant is a gas heavier than air, but it is held under tremendous pressure and can leak. Most smaller air conditioners do not have a reservoir of extra coolant, and so leakage gradually impacts performance. The coolant has less pressure as it leaks, meaning that it has less density as it passes through the heat sink. Because it cannot transfer heat as effectively, the compressor must work longer.
Another problem with coolant is that it becomes dirty. It spends part of its time as a liquid, and so it can dissolve and carry microscopic contaminants such as rust from the copper pipes. These contaminants can increase wear on the compressor, which effects the lifespan of the unit. It saves money to have the coolant filtered or replaced every five years or so.
A good air conditioning maintenance service can detect all sorts of problems and can easily fix them. Older air conditioners do not need to be replaced if they are kept at top performance. Quality service can save thousands of dollars by delaying a new installation. If a new HVAC unit is desired, then count on the people who know air conditioners.