Goettl Air conditioning unit

Why Is Low Refrigerant a Major Concern?

When it comes to your home’s cooling system, modern air conditioners are more efficient and reliable than ever before. However, they are not without their problems, and refrigerant leaks are among the most common issues you may encounter.

While a minor refrigerant leak may not immediately break down your AC or stop cooling your home, it is still a serious problem that requires prompt attention. Here’s why you should schedule air conditioning repairs at the first sign of low refrigerant levels.

1.    Air Not Sufficiently Cooled

Your air conditioner doesn’t actively cool the air in your home; instead, it uses refrigerant to facilitate the heat transfer. The refrigerant absorbs heat from the air, and the cooled air is distributed throughout your living space. However, less refrigerant in the system means less heat removal, resulting in your AC blowing lukewarm air throughout your house. To effectively cool your home, your system must have the right amount of refrigerant.

How Air Conditioners Cool Your Home

Air conditioners work by removing heat from the air inside your home. They do this through refrigeration, which involves the circulation of refrigerant—a chemical compound that can easily change from a liquid to a gas and back again.

Heat Absorption by Refrigerant

The refrigerant flows through the evaporator coil inside your AC unit when it is liquid. As warm air from your home passes over the coil, the refrigerant absorbs heat, causing it to evaporate and turn into a gas.

Cooled Air Distribution

The now-cooled air is blown back into your home through the ductwork, lowering the overall temperature. Meanwhile, the warm refrigerant gas travels to the outdoor unit, releasing the heat absorbed into the outside air and turning it back into a liquid.

Importance of Proper Refrigerant Levels

The correct amount of refrigerant is crucial for this process to work efficiently. If there is too little refrigerant in the system, it cannot absorb enough heat from the air, leading to insufficient cooling. It can result in your AC blowing lukewarm air and struggling to maintain a comfortable temperature in your home.

Effects of Insufficient Refrigerant

In addition to reduced cooling performance, low refrigerant levels make your AC work harder than necessary, causing greater energy consumption and higher utility bills. It can also strain the compressor, potentially leading to costly repairs or premature system failure.

Regular Maintenance and Refrigerant Checks

To operate your AC at peak efficiency, it’s important to schedule regular maintenance checks, including checking and replenishing refrigerant levels if necessary. A professional HVAC technician can assess your system and make any adjustments to keep it running smoothly and efficiently.

2.    Increased Operating Costs

People prefer spending less on weaker performance from their air conditioning system. However, that’s precisely what happens when your system lacks the right refrigerant amount. Because your system isn’t functioning as effectively as it should, it will run longer to cool your home, leading to higher electricity usage and increased operating costs.

Impact on Energy Efficiency

When your air conditioning system is low on refrigerant, it has to work harder and longer to achieve the same level of cooling. This increased workload increases energy consumption as the system uses more electricity. As a result, you’ll notice a significant increase in your monthly utility bills.

Extended Running Times

A system with low refrigerant levels struggles to maintain the desired temperature in your home. It leads to longer running times as the AC works continuously to reach the set temperature on your thermostat. Extended running times increase energy consumption and contribute to wear and tear on the system, potentially shortening its lifespan.

Reduced Cooling Capacity

Low refrigerant levels can compromise the cooling capacity of your air conditioning system. It means that even though the system runs longer, it may still be unable to cool your home adequately. Rooms farthest from the AC unit or on the upper floors may experience insufficient cooling, leading to discomfort for occupants.

Wear and Tear on Components

The increased workload placed on an air conditioning system with low refrigerant levels can accelerate wear and tear on its components. The compressor, in particular, is at risk, as it has to work harder to maintain the required pressure levels in the refrigerant lines. It can lead to premature compressor failure, a costly repair that could have been avoided with timely maintenance.

Potential Long-Term Damage

Continued operation with low refrigerant levels can cause long-term damage to your air conditioning system. The strain on the compressor and other parts can cause more frequent breakdowns and ultimately shorten the lifespan of the entire system. Regular maintenance, including checking and maintaining proper refrigerant levels, is essential to prevent these issues.

3.    Compressor Failure

One of the major concerns of low refrigerant levels is compressor failure. While you might be able to tolerate subpar cooling or increased operating costs for a short time, you don’t want your compressor to fail due to overheating caused by low refrigerant levels. Compressor failure can be costly to replace, so it’s best to schedule AC repairs as soon as you notice signs of low refrigerant.

Importance of the Compressor

The compressor is vital in the refrigeration cycle of your air conditioning system. It allows for compressing the refrigerant gas, raising its temperature and pressure to release heat outside. This process allows the cooled refrigerant to absorb more heat from your home’s air, maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature.

Effects of Low Refrigerant on the Compressor

When your air conditioning system is low on refrigerant, the compressor must work harder to maintain the same level of cooling. It can cause the compressor to overheat, causing potential damage or failure. A failing compressor will be unable to effectively compress the refrigerant, leading to further cooling issues and potentially causing the entire system to malfunction.

Signs of Compressor Failure

Several signs indicate that your compressor may fail due to low refrigerant levels. These include loud or unusual noises from the outdoor unit, reduced cooling performance, and increased energy bills. If you notice any of these signs, you must schedule a professional inspection to diagnose the issue promptly.

Cost of Compressor Replacement

Compressor replacement is a costly repair, often one of the most expensive components to replace in an air conditioning system. The cost can vary as per the size and type of your AC unit, but it typically ranges from several hundred to over a thousand dollars. In addition to the replacement cost, you may incur additional labor and other parts expenses.

Importance of Timely Repairs

If you see signs of low refrigerant in your AC system, it’s very important to schedule repairs immediately. It will help you avoid any inconvenience or cost caused by compressor breakdown. An HVAC expert can examine your system, find the problem, and repair it as needed so that the compressor and air conditioning unit work well for future use.

Address Your Low Refrigerant Problem Today!

Your air conditioning system may need to work better with low refrigerant levels. It can make your AC less efficient, cause more expensive operation, and possibly lead to compressor failure. It is very important to deal with any indications of low refrigerant quickly so your system functions properly and efficiently.

If you need air conditioning repairs, contact Goettl Air Conditioning & Plumbing immediately. Our skilled team can figure out and fix problems caused by low refrigerant levels, which will help keep your house cool and comfortable all year round.


What Our Customers Say About Us

Gonzalo CastilloGonzalo Castillo
17:20 13 Jul 24
Peter is very experienced and professional. He knows a lot and explains everything in detail.
John McCarreyJohn McCarrey
13:56 13 Jul 24
Excellent service!
Gary StapletonGary Stapleton
02:37 13 Jul 24
I called Goettl to get a second opinion on a/c repair options or replacement. Peter Medelez conducted a very thorough system check and confirmed all the same issues previously identified but found an additional issue; tipping the scale to full replacement. We appreciated his professionalism and knowledge: answering all our questions and explaining the issues and options. We ultimately chose Goettl for the replacement option due to their price and professionalism.
James KroppJames Kropp
17:19 09 Jul 24
It was great
Robert WilliamsRobert Williams
17:06 09 Jul 24
Peter was great! Explained every detail I needed and answered all my questions!
Gustavo EscobarGustavo Escobar
16:57 09 Jul 24
Jesus Gloria provided exceptional service as the Goettl Technician this past weekend. He demonstrated great attention to detail in addressing the issues with our air conditioning unit and resolved them quickly, within 30 minutes. Jesus has a strong dedication to his profession and the company he represents, as evidenced by his professional demeanor and the quality of his work. His customer service skills are top-notch, earning a 5-star rating from us. We were so impressed by his service that we have decided to become members of the Goettl service.
Jesse Vann, JrJesse Vann, Jr
15:19 09 Jul 24
Jehad and Cameron provided great recommendation and customer service for my AC replacement.
Reda MoxleyReda Moxley
15:08 09 Jul 24
17:04 01 Jul 24
Got exactly what we needed with the service and had great customer service from Tyler for our plumbing and with Jehad for our AC work. They were awesome! Thanks!
Donna OwensDonna Owens
15:51 01 Jul 24
Rudy came out and was very professional and addressed our plumbing needs in a timely manner, highly recommended.
Neuro NerdNeuro Nerd
15:06 01 Jul 24
William and Cameron were knowledgeable, friendly, professional, respectful and put on plastic booties over their shoes when they came into the house. Our pets were comfortable with them and that says a lot. We will definitely ask for them again in the future if our AC has any issues.
Karen PardoKaren Pardo
14:55 01 Jul 24
Jehad did an amazing job after checking the entire unit he came down and thoroughly explained everything that needed to get done/replace.
Kelly MoserKelly Moser
17:01 27 Jun 24
Matthew was on time respectful and very curious. He explained everything I needed to know and I felt no pressure to buy additional things. Thank you Matt .
Dusengimana ErnestDusengimana Ernest
15:49 27 Jun 24
Jesus gloria did great. Wonderful
Nick LoprzNick Loprz
14:39 27 Jun 24
Charles JeterCharles Jeter
22:12 26 Jun 24
Kimberly FordKimberly Ford
21:34 26 Jun 24
EXCELLENT CUSTOMER SERVICE!! Jesus Gloria provided AC maintenance today providing with photos and video of his findings and a thorough explanation of any issues found. Richard Wenzlaff and Junior also came out today for the plumbing maintenance and also provided EXCELLENT CUSTOMER SERVICE. I have very clean water. They checked out my water heaters, water softener, osmosis, etc…no issues were noted! Three AWESOME, hard-working, thorough gentleman! Professional and courteous! Thanks guys! Appreciate your hard work and honesty!
Music by JuanMusic by Juan
17:47 19 Jun 24
Supreme service.
Erica RussellErica Russell
17:16 19 Jun 24
Awesome experience. Jesus Gloria was very friendly and informative and solved the problem quickly.
16:06 19 Jun 24
Josh was amazing! He was personable, polite, professional, and he walked me through everything he was doing and looking at. If I could give him ten stars I would!