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What to Do if You Are Experiencing a Refrigerant Leak

Posted by Empire Blog at 12:30 pm on August 5, 2015

refrigerant leak

Now that the weather is getting hotter, air conditioners will be running full blast. More often than not, these air conditioners have refrigerant leaks, which can cause some damage to your air conditioner and increase your electricity bill. Low levels of refrigerant put more stress on your compressor, which can lead to damage in most parts of the compressor. This can lead to costly repair bills, which is why you should have your air conditioner checked for leaks at least once a year.

Expert HVAC Repair in Atlanta

Some refrigerant leaks are hard to detect because the air conditioner is still cold and seems to be working fine, while others may be obvious if the air conditioner isn’t cooling at all. If you feel your air conditioner is suffering from a refrigerant leak, don’t try to fix it by yourself. You are likely to make matters worse, which is why it is better to leave it to professionals like the HVAC repair specialists at Empire, who have the skills and experience to deal with situations like this.

Minor Leaks Lead to Damage

Empire specialists know that some refrigerant leaks are very small and elusive, which is why we use electronic leak detectors, which allows us to find leaks as small as 0.2 ounces per year. The ability to catch leaks as small as these saves you a lot of money in the long run, because it is less expensive than trying to fix a busted compressor. Once the leak has been sealed, our certified professional will test the repair, then charge the unit with the correct amount of refrigerant, which will allow your air conditioner to work at the optimal efficiency level.

Checking Evaporator Coils

While a lot of refrigerant leaks are easy to find, there are some that are dependent on temperature or pressure and are more elusive. During a refrigerant leak search, one of our technicians recorded a big leak at an evaporator coil fitting. Cooling (actually heat absorption) takes place in the evaporator coil, which makes one of the most common places to find a refrigerant leak. This is where the R-22 is turning from liquid to gas, and when the system is in an off cycle, the temperature of the coil can get up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. In the cooling mode, the temperatures approach freezing. The fact that the coil is made of dissimilar materials coupled with the constant change in temperature stresses the coil, ultimately leading to coil failure. Replacing the evaporator coil can fix most evaporator refrigerant leaks, but it can get expensive. Most new evaporator coils are all aluminum and tolerate the pressure and temperature changes better than the rifled copper of the past.

Due to the amount of work and experience it takes to locate and fix a refrigerant leak, it is recommended that you call our certified professional specialists at Empire, because we have been serving our community for a long time and provide our clients with quality service every time.

Image courtesy of: Pixabay