4 Common Issues with Air Conditioning Systems in Florida that Can Impact Mental & Physical Health

Lots of kiddos are now preparing to finish the school-year online, and parents are telecommuting more than ever. Those two facts, alone, make your family’s home comfort more important than ever. Now is the time to stay informed and proactive when it comes to maintaining your residential air conditioning system in the Tampa Bay area.

Families are, literally, closer than they’ve ever been, with parents under inordinate amounts of stress, trying to get their jobs done at home, while their tots, tweens, and teens are striving to complete educational requirements online at home, in preparation for final exams and graduation, as it were.

Experiencing an issue with your air conditioner now can be incredibly disruptive to attention spans, moods, and behaviors.

The National Institute of Health [NIH] confirms, “The available evidence suggests that the effects of heat, hypoxia… on cognitive function are both task and severity dependent. Complex tasks are particularly vulnerable to extreme heat stress, whereas both simple and complex task performances appear to be vulnerable at even moderate altitudes.”

As described in the NIH article with cited studies and sources, cognitive function is described as “performance in objective tasks that require mental effort,” including memory, attention, and executive function. “Simple tasks,” as mentioned above, involves perceptual-motor skills, like “choice reaction time” and memory recall. “Complex tasks require greater effort and/or attention, such as multiple/dual tasks, (like) complex motor coordination and working memory tasks.”

MD Edge Psychiatry published the same conclusion, “Extreme heat has significant effects on mental health and behavior. Research shows that the number of people exposed to extreme heat is expected to rise in many American cities, particularly across the southern United States.”

In consideration of the extreme heat we experience in The Sunshine State, if you notice a difference in your air conditioner’s performance, remember, the higher levels of heat and humidity will negatively affect your home’s overall air quality, which, in turn, will impact your family’s physical and mental health.

In light of today’s world, air conditioning issues are even more critical, as students of all ages finish their school-year, parents work from home, and families are encouraged and/or compelled to stay at home as much as possible for their physical well-being.

In some cases, please note when it is wise to contact Proficient Air for a professional air conditioner inspection. Our promise is to provide appropriate, affordable solutions to maintain your air conditioning system, which will keep your home comfortable and positively impact your family’s physical and mental health.

The Florida Academy has identified the following four common issues with air conditioning systems in Florida that you may or may not be able to evaluate and manage yourself but warrant your awareness.

The Air Conditioner Won’t Kick-on

If your air conditioner will not power on, you should first check the electrical breakers. That may be one in the house on the circuit board, and one that may be placed on the exterior of the house near the compressor. “Try resetting the breaker that the air conditioner is connected to,” Florida Academy recommends.

If the breakers are fine, take a look at your thermostat. Remove the cover and see if dust is impeding the circuitry, preventing its proper function.

The Air is Not Cool Enough

There may be several reasons why your air-conditioned air does not feel cool enough.

First, when was the last time you checked the air filter? Air conditioner manufacturers and professional air conditioning service companies, like Proficient Air, recommends air filters be changed on a regular basis. It depends on the grade and style of air filter your air conditioner requires or supports. Five-inch filters may last six months to a year. Whereas, one-inch filters should be checked and changed much more frequently, like once per month.

Second, your intake register and vents may be clogged or covered, which will not allow cool air to enter your home. Check the register and vents throughout your home to make sure they are free from excessive dust and debris, they are fully-open, and they are not blocked by furniture, clothing, drapes, or what-have-you.

To that end, the air conditioner compressor outdoors may have too much foliage and debris surrounding it and causing it to work harder for not. Try to check the compressor area and keep it clear of leaves, limbs, weeds, foliage, and other debris, especially after storms. The Florida Academy suggests,  ”To allow optimal airflow, keep two or three feet around the compressor free of any plants, including trees.”

Finally, if these tips do not rectify the problem, and the air is still not cooling properly, it may be the level of refrigerant if you are experiencing a leak. This definitely requires a professional assessment and the assistance of highly-qualified air conditioning service technicians at Proficient Air.

The Air Conditioner Runs Constantly or Intermittently

If your air conditioner is running all the time, your energy bill will certainly reflect the excessive use, and the exterior and interior environments you inhabit will suffer for it.

Moreover, if your air conditioner is not running often enough, the inside of your home will be uncomfortable, which will directly impact your family’s mental and physical health.

Check your entire residence for open windows, exterior doors that maybe ajar, gaping spaces around doors and windows, anywhere that cool air may be escaping. Seal gaps and spaces with caulking, plastic strips for the bottom/top of exterior doors, and repair cracked or broken glass.

Check the outdoor compressor and make sure it is free of debris, for the reasons previously stated.

If these are not the culprits for your air conditioner woes, it’s important to contact an air conditioning service technician at Proficient Air to check and clean the evaporator coil, and carefully inspect the entire air conditioning unit for potential mechanical failures.

The Air Conditioner Sprung a Leak

“It’s never a good sign when your air conditioner is leaking,” says Florida Academy. “ Regardless of whether it’s a water leak due to a faulty drainage pipe or a coolant leak, both are problematic,” according to Florida Academy.

If there is an abundance of condensation and water is leaking from an overflowing drain pan, this can result in costly air conditioner repairs.

When refrigerant leaks, coils can become frozen, which will inhibit the cooling of the air blowing into your home.

In both cases, an experienced HVAC repair technician is required to resolve the issue.

If you are not on a regular air conditioning maintenance program in the Tampa Bay area, it’s an important consideration to curtail these common air conditioner issues that manifest at exactly the wrong times. Our professional Proficient Air service technicians are skillfully-trained to carefully examine and perform expert air conditioning maintenance of the primary components of your air conditioner, from the indoor air handler to the outdoor compressor, even if we didn’t install the system.

With Proficient Air, you can rest assured your home remains cool and comfortable as seasonal temperatures rise, for the overall mental and physical well-being of you and your family.

If your air conditioner is under warranty, Proficient Air honors warranty repairs on most equipment, whether we installed it or not. Warranties only cover parts, however, and are subject to a warranty fee. Labor is an additional charge with warranty repairs.

Proficient Air in Palm Harbor offers a variety of high-quality maintenance contracts, specifically tailored to your needs and budget.  Protect your HVAC investment and keep your home and family cool, comfortable, and energy-efficient all summer long, with Proficient Air. Call us today: 727.386.2732

Sources:

Florida Academy

MD Edge Psychiatry