Air conditioning repairs becoming more common this summer

Air conditioning units at Swartz Creek Senior Center vandalized

Temperatures have soared in recent weeks across the Borderland, with triple-digit readings surpassing 20 days this year. And for residents in El Paso and Las Cruces, these hot temperatures bring a larger workload to residents air-conditioning units.

"The hotter it gets, the more calls we get," said Joe Rodriguez, a contractor for Sunshine Heating and Air Conditioning in West El Paso.

Rodriguez says his company has seen about 15 new calls per day. Most customers that call to schedule repairs on their air-conditioning units have to wait a couple of days for a technician to visit, because of the amount of customers they have scheduled. He attributes many of these repair calls due to lack of servicing the unit prior to the summer season.

"They don't service. They don't even replace the air filters, so that filter gets clogged," he said. "And if it gets worse, it will go into the evaporator and then they have a much bigger problem."

Rodriguez says his staff hasn't only gotten calls on repairs; he's received plenty of calls from customers wanting to transition from swamp coolers to refrigerated air.

But customers with refrigerated air may think switching the A/C unit on and off multiple time throughout the day won't affect the system. Rodriguez says that's not true.

"You don't give the thermostat time to rest, and then it keeps going and going," he said. "Over time it will build up ice and you waste a lot of energy. So keep it at a decent temperature."

Rodriguez recommends households with refrigerated air set their thermostat to 75 degrees as to not overwork your system.

"I set mine to 77 year around," he said. "Day and night."

And if you want to keep your A/C system running smoothly throughout the year, it's a good idea to change your air filters often.

"I recommend once every two months," Rodriguez said. Changing the air filters keeps the system clean and and free of dust and dirt, which can clog up and choke the system. And if you want to take your maintenance a step further, Rodriguez suggests cleaning your condensing unit.

"They can wash the condensing unit outside," he said. "Just turn off the power and pressure wash it. It looks like a radiator. From the top down, you'll see lots of dirt coming down. That will save you money, lots of money."

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