12 On Your Side: A/C companies working overtime

By: Elizabeth Owens Email
By: Elizabeth Owens Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock / Monday, July 2, 2012

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Air conditioning techs are working overtime to keep with the demand during this heat wave.

"I had somewhere around 37 calls come through," said Shane Smith.

The Babbitt's Etc. tech pulled 20 hours alone of overtime on Saturday and Sunday.

"It's always busy in the summer but this is definitely one of the hot ones," he said.

The average wait for an A/C company to respond to a call is about three days.

"We generally take our calls as they come through. There are some considerations -- if you have more than one unit we generally prioritize those that usually have only one air conditioner," Smith said.

Babbitt's and other A/C companies will also sometimes take in consideration whether you are a prior customer or if you have health or young children in the hot home. Homeowners should mention all complications to the A/C company because it could possibly move you up a long waiting list.

Most of Smith's calls are problems caused by a dirty A/C unit and/or filter.

"A lot of it has to do with the units not being cleaned properly," he said.

Grass, pine straw and dirt can clog up coils and cause parts to overheat and break. Homeowners should use a water hose to spray down and clean their outdoor units twice a year. A dirty filter can also cause the A/C unit to run slow. Filters need to be changed every three months.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when your looking for an A/C Company:

  • Call around and compare prices.
  • Remember there is a back-up right now, so you may need to exercise some patience.
  • If you're calling on a weekend or after hours, it will cost you more; typically time and half.
  • Make sure the company is licensed and bonded.
  • Finally, don't be afraid to ask questions and compare prices for parts.


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