When Does Winter Start in Arizona and How It Can Affect AC

When Does Winter Start in Arizona and How It Can Affect AC

You already know that it can get pretty hot in Arizona. However, the weather changes frequently as the year goes along, and climate conditions can be dramatically different based on what parts of Arizona you are in.

The winter in Arizona isn’t as aggressive as in other states, but it still causes a change in the terrain. Your responsibility as a homeowner is to ensure the HVAC system is up and running by the time the mild winter starts.

It’s best to anticipate dropping temperatures and prepare your home accordingly for the changing Arizona weather by servicing your AC with a professional like the one here: https://www.callautumn.com/sun-city-west-az-heating-ac-service/.

Coldest Months in Arizona

Winter in Arizona starts in December and ends in mid-March. By December, you have plenty of time to have your air conditioner serviced and inspected in preparation for winter. Regardless of the cold, an AC is still necessary when it gets too stuffy indoors.

ACs are meant for use when it’s hot outside. So it’s bound to function differently in winter. Look into how the winter could affect your AC before running it in the coldest months in Arizona.

How Does Winter in Arizona Affect AC   

AC manufacturers found a way to ensure you can use your AC in winter without complications. It’s all in the designs. For instance, some air conditioners’ freeze mode is helpful in winter. An AC runs at low power to ensure it doesn’t get too cold in your house.

Set your AC to this mode to offer protection to electronic equipment. Although manufacturers design ACs to withstand winter weather, certain things could still go wrong. You have to be willing to risk the cold water damaging your air conditioner.

The cold weather might be an agitator that causes problems within an air conditioner. Learning about AC problems caused by cold winter weather might help you decide whether to run it

So, how can the winter weather in Arizona affect AC?

Thickening and Hardening of Lubricant and Compressor Overheating

The compressor is a moving part that uses a lubricant and oil to keep running. The freezing temperature could thicken the oil and AC lubricant, causing the compressor to overwork. Eventually, the compressors will overheat and wear out due to friction and overheating.

The compressor overheats since it’s overworked. Besides, its design allows it to compress vapor, not liquid, so the liquefied refrigerant overloads it. It overworks to keep your home comfortable enough, which also causes it to overheat more often.

Frozen Coils

Under normal circumstances, an AC always has water dripping from it which is condensation from the outdoor copper wires. Instead of leaking as per the design, the water condensation may freeze over the coils during the winter. All the frost forming inside the system ends up cooling the circulated air, and you get cold air from the louvers.

Damage will likely occur to the coils, leaving you to pay for replacements later. In addition, the frost in the coils makes it easy to puncture them. Leave the unit for hours to give the ice time to thaw off if you notice it.

General AC Damage

Manufacturers design air conditioners to run in temperatures above 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Unfortunately, running your AC in cold conditions leaves it susceptible to damage as components overwork to ensure your space remains comfortable.

What to Do If You Can’t Use Your AC in Arizona during winter

Some days and nights may get colder than others and damage your air conditioner. The other reason you might not be using your air conditioning system is due to a personal preference. If that is the case, do whatever you can to eliminate stuffiness in your home.

There are things you can do to ensure you have a comfortable living space with somewhat clean air. First, try the following effective alternatives to having an air conditioner in winter.

Open the Blinds for a While

Usually, in the summer, you close the blinds to keep the sun out. During the winter, you’ll do the opposite and open them to allow some cold to come into your space.

Try alternating between closing and opening the blinds to ensure a comfortable living space. Do this once you feel that the indoors have gotten too warm.

Use a Fan In Place Of an AC

The fan can ensure sufficient air circulation and reduce indoor warmth. All you have to do is install one on the ceiling or get an electric fan.

The advantage of using a fan over the AC is that the cold winter weather won’t damage it. Besides, most fans are portable, so you can use them in any part of your home.

Open the Windows

You can open the windows briefly to allow circulation and blow cold air into your house. It’s a highly effective alternative for cooling your home when your AC cannot work.

Opening the windows allows you to regulate indoor temperature and save on energy bills since you don’t use electricity.

Install Thin Curtains

Wool and cotton curtains are the most capable of retaining heat. Thick curtain trap heat in your home. Typically, thick curtains are only a good option during the cold season or if you live in a cold climatic region. Also, they are more effective when you have the air conditioner running.

Thin curtains might be a better solution since they don’t trap heat in excess. However, consider installing silk or linen curtains as they are more effective in lowering the indoor temperature to comfortable levels.

Final Words

Although you can run your air conditioner during the cold months in Arizona, experts recommend not running it when the outdoor temperature is below 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Even running it when the temperature outside is 60 degrees Fahrenheit is a stretch.

Leave the ice that has formed on the system for a few hours to thaw before running it to give the compressor oil time to warm up. It will also allow ice buildup on the condenser to melt. Consider talking to a trained technician to have questions answered when running an AC during winter.

About Amanda

I love to buy a lot of products for the home, and dissect them out. I split them into duds and winners, and share the findings here on my site. As a reader of my site, I'm aiming for your next purchase to be an informed and inspired one.

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