IERNA's Heating & Cooling Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Dunedin’

Air Conditioning Guide: What Professional AC Maintenance Includes

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Besides the cool air, what we like most about air conditioning in Tampa is that we don’t have to do anything to still live in a cool climate when it’s boiling outside.  With programmed thermostats adjusting the temperatures automatically, we don’t even have to turn it on.

Therefore, it is very inconvenient (not to mention uncomfortable) when our unit misbehaves and forces us to pay attention.  Our first inclination, suddenly over-heated,  may be to call for help, but often the repair can be accomplished easily or avoided completely by checking the drain line that may be clogged.

When it gets more complicated, it is important to consult a Tampa air conditioning professional.

Air Conditioning 101

Air conditioning is a process which involves the rapid evaporation and condensation of chemicals called refrigerants, compounds that have properties allowing them to change from liquid to gas and back again at low temperatures.

Simply stated: when the liquid evaporates and transforms into gas it absorbs heat.  Compressed tightly together again, the matter condenses back into liquid with a residue of unwanted moist heat that must be released to the outdoors.  Over the course of handling the air to cool it, air conditioners are able to filter dust and dehumidify the air as well.

Annual Service

Air conditioning units are designed to last for quite a while, so long as they are maintained regularly.  A service contract with a reputable company ensures reliable maintenance and establishes a relationship so that if anything should go wrong, your call for help will be at the top of the list with a mechanic who likely knows the details of your particular unit. Here are some of the maintenance tasks that will be performed during your visit:

  • a check for the correct amount of refrigerant in the system;
  • a pressurized system test for any leaks using an actual leak detector tool;
  • a controlled evacuation and disposal of any excess refrigerant instead of an illegal toss in the dumpster;
  • a check for and seal of any duct leakage within the in central systems;
  • a measure of air flow through the evaporator coil;
  • a verification of the correct electric control sequence, making sure the heating and cooling systems cannot operate simultaneously;
  • an inspection, cleaning and maintenance of the electric terminals and applying a non-conductive coating if necessary;
  • a check of all belts for tightness and wear;
  • a check for oil in the motors;
  • a check for the accuracy of the thermostat.

To schedule a maintenance visit, give Ierna’s Heating & Cooling a call today!

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Air Conditioning Repair Tip: Causes of My AC Freezing Up

Monday, June 4th, 2012

If you have ever experienced a frozen air conditioning system in Tampa, you know the symptoms. The house is too warm. Water may be dripping from the ceiling. Sometimes you can hear the system running, but there is no cool air coming out of the vents. Ice and frost have built up in your air conditioning system, rendering it all but useless.

Yes, you may know what the problem looks like, but how about what causes it? Or better yet, how to fix it?


The most common cause of a frozen air conditioning system is a dirty air filter. Clean or replace the filter according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Turn the air conditioning system off, and just run the fan. This will help thaw the ice and get things running again.

It could also be that the cooling coil or evaporator coil is dirty. In this case, air flow will gradually decrease over time, but you may not notice until the system freezes up. If the coil is dirty, or if the system freezes again after replacing the filter, call a Tampa AC professional.

Low Refrigerant

Your air conditioning system is a closed loop, so refrigerant is meant to stay within the system without needing to be replaced or replenished. Over time, though, the AC system can develop leaks, which can cause freezing problems. Common culprits that can lead to a refrigerant leak include:

  • Friction against the piping
  • Open valves
  • Weak solder joints, or
  • Loose fittings

The only way to correctly diagnose and repair a refrigerant leak is to have a certified AC technician inspect it for himself.

 Needs Repair

Finally, the problem could be that some part of the AC system is defective, faulty or otherwise in need of repair. The blower motor or the attached relay may not be working properly, which can cause freezing. When this happens, professional repair is the only recourse.

Now that you are able to figure what is causing your AC system to freeze up, call Ierna’s Heating & Cooling today get it fixed, so you can stop dealing with the dripping ceiling and start enjoying the nice, cool air.

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Air Conditioning Guide: Air Duct Components and Controls

Monday, April 16th, 2012

While the purpose of your Tampa air conditioning is to provide unobtrusive comfort, the components under the floor, behind the walls, alongside of the house or up on the roof are very real.

Basic Conditioning

Based on the principal that heat gravitates to cooler temperatures, most systems of air conditioning utilize a process of making a chemical rapidly transform from gas to liquid and back again to absorb and redistribute unwanted heat.  Known as refrigerants, these chemicals are chosen for their properties to expand and contract at low temperatures.  Pressure is added by a compressor or released in coils to accelerate the transformation.

Likewise (and more obviously), heat is produced typically by a controlled flame and transferred to the air.  In both cases, at an exchange point, the air is conditioned and blowers circulate the air to and from the rooms through the ductwork.


Forced air heat in many older homes have ductwork that is in bad repair. They are commonly made of metal, take up a lot of space and are prone to rattle.  The one big advantage, it was discovered, was that they were all set in place to distribute cool air as well as heat.

Advances in technology have increased the insulation capacities and decreased the sizes of ductwork so that more and more space can be treated with better value and less structural impact.  This is due in large part to the highly efficient Tampa heating and cooling systems which are available today.

Enhancing Control

Although the movement of air is fairly simple, efficiency is increased by controls that monitor, increase and decrease the amount and temperature, isolate sections and filters and adjusts humidity.  What began as a simple manual turn of a lever, technology again now makes possible fully automatic control of everything from a remote location with a smart phone.

In between are thermostats, dampers, zone controls and relay switches to accommodate all of the many varieties we have found to take care of our most basic creature comfort.

If you have any questions about your air conditioner’s components or controls, give Ierna’s Heating & Cooling a call!

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