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Northern Virginia's Choice


McDaniel Service, Inc Blog

You Shouldn’t Lose Refrigerant!

Something is wrong with your air conditioner. This is the last thing you want to discover now that summer is officially here and you need your system working at its best. However, that should be good motivation to get this problem resolved promptly. So, what’s going on?

Even with maintenance each year, your system will need the occasional air conditioning repair in Alexandria, VA. One repair it may need is to address a refrigerant leak. Didn’t know that losing refrigerant was bad news? Don’t worry you aren’t the first. But we do want to fill you in on what is going on with your system when it loses refrigerant and why it is something you should absolutely be concerned about.

Refrigerant is circulated, not used up

Refrigerant serves as a heat transfer medium, not a fuel. The refrigerant in your unit is enough to serve throughout its entire lifespan. This substance undergoes a repeated process of evaporation and condensation, described below, that allows it to cool the air that is blown into your home.


Your refrigerant is “evaporated” in order to change it from a liquid into a gas that then enters your evaporator coil.

Heat Absorption

The now gaseous refrigerant absorbs the heat or thermal energy in the hot air that is being passed over the evaporator coil. This allows it to cool down the air which will then be blown back into your home.


Next, your refrigerant enters your condenser outside your home. Here it is condensed, forcing it to release the heat it absorbed, and returning it to a liquid state. Then it is cycled indoors again to repeat the process.

If you lose refrigerant, it means less cool air

Because refrigerant is not a fuel, this means that losing this chemical can spell trouble for your air conditioner. After all, without the proper amount of refrigerant in your system, your AC is unable to actually cool the air at all, leaving you with an overly expensive fan!

Figuring out that you’re losing refrigerant isn’t always obvious unless you know what to look for. Warning signs can include:

  • Reduced cooling power
  • Increased energy bills
  • Short cycling operation
  • Hissing or bubbling noises

The sooner that you reach out for help with addressing a refrigerant leak, the better off your system and your energy bills will be.

Repairing refrigerant leaks is a job for the experts

If you notice any of the warning signs that you have a refrigerant leak then it means you should reach out to an expert for repairs. A technician can get your leak repaired quickly and can recharge (refill) your refrigerant supply. With the help of a trained professional, you can get your air conditioner running correctly again. We can even help with a system replacement if you have an older type of refrigerant that is overly expensive or impossible to refill.

When you need help with a malfunctioning air conditioner, contact the experts at McDaniel Service, Inc to schedule your appointment for repairs. Service is our middle name!

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