Frequently Asked Questions

    • High electric bills?

      Is your bill much higher than you think it should be?

      Are you using a lot more electricity than you used to but haven’t changed habits?

      Most Tampa Bay air conditioning contractors will tell you that you need to upgrade your air conditioning system to a newer unit. That is not always the solution. There are several factors which may influence the efficiency of your AC system, including the below:

      • Air conditioners and their components require regular maintenance to function effectively and efficiently throughout their years of service. If your air conditioning system’s maintenance is not up to par you will be sure to experience steady decline in air conditioning performance while your energy use steadily increases.
      • If the unit has not been properly maintained and the coils are clogged the unit will have to work longer and harder to achieve the results you want. This also decreases the lifespan of your unit.
      • Rodents or service people may have damaged duct work in the attic creating costly leaks. You may be wasting money cooling your attic!
      • Heat strips can malfunction and run while the in cooling mode causing your air conditioning system to heat and cool at the same time!
      • Improperly sized duct work can make your air conditioner work too hard.
      • Insufficient or uneven insulation make your air conditioning system work harder to cool your home.
      • Home envelope problems may be letting cool air out and unconditioned air in through holes you don’t even know exist .

      The Comfort Authority wants to show you how how to optimize the efficiency and performance of your air conditioning system. Some solutions may be as simple as keeping the area around your outside condenser unit clean and free of debris and obstruction to airflow! Our goal, as your air conditioning contractor, is to inform and educate you so that you fully understand what is going on in your home. The Comfort Authority will take the time to meticulously assess your whole home to root out the real problems and offer you the most practical solutions. We service the Tampa Bay area. Call us today at (813) 518-8030 to schedule your complete home assessment and our experts will provide you with the knowledge you need to make the best decisions you can.

    • Concerned About Indoor Air Contaminants?

      Kids with asthma?

      Breathing and respiratory issues?

      Do you feel better after you leave the house than you do when you are in it?

      Do guests notice unusual smells.

      Is that mold I see?

      Indoor air quality is a hot topic nowadays. You can find all kinds of companies in the Tampa Bay area, not only air conditioning services, that will sell you special filters, in-duct air cleaners, including UV systems, or free-standing whole-house air cleaners.

      Air contaminants are most often the problem. Filtration and UV systems help capture and kill some of them, and we do recommend these systems, but there are considerations that must be taken first. The important question is, “Where are the air contaminants are coming from?” Is your home well sealed? Is your duct system designed properly and leak-free? Is your air conditioner maintaining the right levels of humidity? These causes of air contaminants must be eliminated before adding filters and air cleaners or you’ll just be throwing your money away.

      The comprehensive assessment The Comfort Authority experts will perform in your home will answer all the important questions. Our goal, as your air conditioning contractor, is to inform and educate you so that you fully understand what is going on in your home. We will root out the real problems and offer you the most practical solutions. Call us today at (813) 518-8030 to schedule your complete home assessment and our experts will provide you with the knowledge you need to make the best decisions you can.

    • Can’t attain a desired temperature?

      Are there times that you are trying to cool (or heat) your home but you’re unable to reach the temperature you set your thermostat to?

      Or does it often seem like your system is struggling to keep up?

      When experiencing this kind of problem it is common to hear that your system may be low on refrigerant and just needs a little Freon charge, but did you know that air conditioning systems never lose their refrigerant unless the system develops a leak? And if there is a leak, the refrigerant could be leaking into the air you and your family breathe. Refrigerants are harmful substances and are not meant to be breathed. Low refrigerant will also cause further damage to your system and, if left unresolved, can lead to much more expensive repairs or replacements, so it is very important to figure out why the refrigerant is low and fix any leaks discovered.

      Another thing you may hear is that your air conditioner is too small and that you need to replace it with a new, larger unit. Again, it is wise to be very wary when you hear this. The answer is not always so simple.

      There are a lot of factors which can lead to an under-performing system, many of which can be much less expensive to address than the brand new air conditioning system you were just told you needed. Improperly configured duct work, hidden duct leaks, uneven or inadequate insulation, or simply incorrect settings on the air conditioner are among the factors that are often overlooked and can be much less expensive to address.

      We want to show you there’s a better way. Our goal, as your air conditioning contractor, is to inform and educate you so that you fully understand what is going on in your home. The Comfort Authority will take the time to meticulously assess your whole home to root out the real problems and offer you the most practical solutions. We service the Tampa Bay area. Call us today schedule your complete home assessment and our experts will provide you with the knowledge you need to make the best decisions you can.

      You deserve a better way.

    • What is air conditioning?

      The Original Definition of Air-Conditioning

      • To maintain a suitable degree of humidity in all seasons and in all parts of a building
      • To free the air from excessive humidity during certain seasons
      • To supply a constant and adequate supply of ventilation
      • To efficiently wash and free the air from all micro-organisms, effluvias, dust, soot, and other foreign bodies
      • To efficiently cool the air of the rooms during certain seasons
      • To either heat the rooms in winter or to help heat them
      • To combine all the above desiderata in an apparatus that will not be commercially prohibitive in first cost or cost of maintenance

      (Source: Nagengast, B., 1999, “Early Twentieth Century Air-Conditioning Engineering”, ASHRAE Journal, March (p.55))

      Before I began working in the air conditioning industry I’d always thought that an air conditioner’s function was to cool in the summer and heat in the winter. I just needed to push the up arrow for warmer and down for cooler. As far as I was concerned, as long as pushing those buttons did what I expected them to do there were no problems, no matter how high my electric bill was, how uncomfortable some rooms may have been, or how low (or high) I had to set my thermostat to feel comfortable. It was when those buttons didn’t do what I expected that I would call an AC company and, fingers crossed, they would come out, replace a part, and get me back up and running quickly without trying to sell me a new A/C!

      Here at The Comfort Authority we believe that the definition developed in 1908 still applies today, and we know that there is only one way to know for sure that your air conditioning system is doing what it was made to do. To do that we must test the AC system, duct work, insulation, home envelope, and most importantly, understand the needs and wants of those living in the space. Many times the answer to a simple question like, “Do you even like the system?” reveals so much about whether or not your a/c system is performing how you want it to, yet when was the last time you were asked that question?

      In addition to being able to solve the most complicated comfort concerns and improve the health of your home – all while providing peace of mind – The Comfort Authority offers the finest solutions for your air conditioning and heating needs from single-stage cooling to variable compressor technology. If that doesn’t mean anything to you, don’t worry, just know we can provide solutions for any budget, technical demand, and desire you may have. The Comfort Authority has it under control.

      Call The Comfort Authority today at (813) 518-8030 to experience air conditioning as it was meant to be! You deserve comfort, health and peace of mind.

    • Too much humidity or muggy?

      Does the air in your home sometimes feel sticky or damp?

      Do you have to run your air conditioner at a much lower temperature than your neighbor to achieve the same “feel”?

      Do you have to turn your thermostat down lower at night to be able to sleep comfortably?

      Sometimes, when you call an air conditioning contractor out to help you with these issues, the contractor you call might check your air conditioner, see that it’s working, and charge you their diagnostic fee to just tell you, “Your air conditioner is not the problem.”

      Some a/c contractors will tell you that you need a bigger air conditioner, and they just so happen to have one they can sell to you.

      Other contractors may tell you that you need a smaller air conditioner, and they just so happen to have one they can sell to you.

      These contractors may understand air conditioners, they obviously don’t understand air CONDITIONING.

      Some of the factors contributing to humidity or mugginess in homes are pretty basic. Homes are not air tight. There are holes in houses that you are unaware of. Unconditioned air from outside comes in through these holes, and the air is humid, as it normally is in Tampa Bay. AC contractors don’t test for holes. Restrictive duct work can cause negative pressure, which will intensify humidity issues as well. AC contractors don’t look for restricted duct work.

      We want to show you how it SHOULD be done. Our goal, as your air conditioning contractor, is to inform and educate you so that you fully understand what is going on in your home. The Comfort Authority will take the time to meticulously assess your whole home to root out the real problems and offer you the most practical solutions. We service the Tampa Bay area. Call us today schedule your complete home assessment and our experts will provide you with the knowledge you need to make the best decisions you can.

    • Too much dust?

      Do you feel like even though you dust often there is more dust every time you turn around?

      Do have dust allergies?

      Many air conditioning contractors will tell you that you need a better filter; or that you should get rid of your carpet; or get a duct cleaning; or seal your duct work.

      While there are many good reasons to have a good air filter, filters actually do not have much impact on controlling dust in your home.

      While there are many good reasons to have a good air filter, filters actually do not have much impact on controlling dust in your home. The main function of a filter is to capture particles from the air going into your air conditioner to keep the air conditioning system clean because dirty evaporator coils can cause failure of your air conditioning system. So, the filter is cleaning the air going into your air conditioner, but what about the rest of the air in your home?

      It’s true that carpet can hold a lot of dust, and that can be a very good thing. Carpet actually catches and holds dust in one place, enabling you to vacuum it to get rid of it. Hard floors let dust fly around, which can make it much harder to remove excess dust. As long as you vacuum regularly you may be better off with carpet. Another bonus to vacuuming often is it actually prolongs the life of your carpet!

      Duct cleaning may remove dust from your duct work, but there shouldn’t have been dust in your duct work to begin with. If there is dust in your duct work, you should worry about taking care of how it got there. Cleaning your duct work will remove what’s in them at the moment, but if you don’t determine the source of the dust you will continue having problems.

      Sealing the ducts could possibly make matters worse if the existing duct work is not sized properly. Improperly sized duct work can create negative pressure, and without going into all the building science technical mumbo-jumbo, this can create a suction effect which can cause unfiltered, unconditioned, dirty air to be pulled in from every hole and opening in your home. The home envelope can have excessive leaking from places you can’t see from inside your home, allowing unclean dirty unfiltered air in. It’s not realistic to think that all dust can be eliminated from a home. Every opening of a door and window and every unsealed opening allow dust in.

      The Comfort Authority can help you significantly reduce the amount of dust entering your home. The experts at The Comfort Authority are BPI (Building Performance Institute) certified, which means they’ve mastered the skills in building science solutions. Our goal, as your air conditioning contractor, is to inform and educate you so that you fully understand what is going on in your home. We will take the time to meticulously assess your whole home to root out the real problems and offer you the most practical solutions. The Comfort Authority services Tampa Bay. Call us today at (813) 518-8030 to schedule your complete home assessment and our experts will provide you with the knowledge you need to make the best decisions you can.

    • Why is this room so much hotter?
      • Do you close the doors or vents to some rooms to try to get more air to other rooms?

      • Are there rooms in your home you don’t use because they’re not comfortable?

      • Is your downstairs cold and upstairs hot?

      • Do your kids complain that their rooms are too hot?

      You might hear a multitude of suggestions from your average air conditioning contractors to address issues with uneven temperatures. Some of the most popular are that you need to add a return here or there, you need to put a bigger vent in, install larger ducts, close this vent, redirect that vent, you need a bigger air conditioner, you need a separate air conditioner… You get the idea. What you won’t typically get is a solution which takes your entire home system into consideration.

      When you are having “hot room” issues the problem usually stems from the duct work. Properly designed and sealed duct systems maintain uniform temperatures and neutral pressure throughout the house and will maximize the lifespan and efficiency of your AC. To find out what is causing uneven temperatures in your home your air conditioning contractor must assess your entire system. You want to make sure the AC contractor you choose is trained and certified to perform the tests required to assess your duct system for problems.

      Of course there are other possible causes to imbalanced temperatures, such as uneven insulation, the location of the sun in relation to the room with the issue, and additions made to the home. Duct design can’t be based solely on the size of your home, and if any contractor tries to “redesign” your duct system without performing the proper tests, you should kindly but firmly show them the way out!

      The Comfort Authority is not your average air conditioning contractor. We want to show you how it SHOULD be done. Our goal, as your air conditioning contractor, is to inform and educate you so that you fully understand what is going on in your home. The Comfort Authority will take the time to meticulously assess your whole home to root out the real problems and offer you the most practical solutions. Call us today schedule your complete home assessment and our experts will provide you with the knowledge you need to make the best decisions you can.

    • Why should I pay to have someone else perform maintenance on my A/C if I can just do it myself?

      Routinely replacing or cleaning your A/C system’s filters is the most important maintenance task to ensure your system continues to perform efficiently. Clogged, dirty filters obstruct airflow and greatly reduce a system’s efficiency. With airflow blocked, air that bypasses the filter may carry dirt straight into the evaporator coil and decrease the coil’s heat-absorbing capacity. You can lower your air conditioner’s energy consumption by 5% to 15% simply by replacing a dirty, clogged filter with a clean one! Your air conditioning system’s filter should be cleaned or replaced every month or two during the cooling season, and maybe even more frequently if the air conditioner is subjected to dusty conditions or if you have furry, four-legged companions in your home. This is especially important in the Tampa Bay area where our AC’s work overtime to keep us cool and comfortable.

      Your air conditioner’s evaporator coil and condenser coil collect dirt over time. A clean filter helps prevents the evaporator coil from soiling quickly, however, the evaporator coil will still collect dirt. This dirt reduces airflow and insulates the coil, making the coil unable to absorb heat effectively. To avoid this problem, your evaporator coil should be checked and cleaned at least once per year. The condenser coils outside can also become very dirty if the environment is dusty or if there is foliage nearby. It’s easy to see the condenser coil and notice if dirt is collecting on its fins. You should keep dirt and debris near the condenser unit to a minimum. Dryer vents, falling leaves, and lawn mowers are all sources of dirt and debris. Cleaning the area around the coil, removing any debris, and cutting foliage back at least 2 feet allows adequate airflow around the condenser.

      While it’s possible to perform these and other important routine maintenance tasks on your air conditioner, a well-trained technician has all the tools and experience to get the job done right without damaging any of the delicate parts of your system. They also will be able to recognize and fix any problems your system may have, preventing inconvenient and costly breakdowns and prolonging the life-span of your air conditioner. Even better, check out and sign up for one of our two amazing Comfort Plans and take all the worry and guesswork out of the picture. Let The Comfort Authority worry about it so you don’t have to!

      Call us at (813) 518-8030 and let us take care of your air conditioner’s maintenance needs so you can spend time doing the things you love.

    • What if you can save yourself some time, money and frustration?

      Furthermore, what if you can get your AC up and running quickly, before you even break a sweat? Don’t put yourself at the mercy of an AC company’s schedule unnecessarily. Take a look at this video we at The Comfort Authority put together to show you how to clear a clogged drain line yourself. If this doesn’t do the trick, give us a call at (813) 518-8030 and we’ll be happy to schedule an appointment. One of our experienced technicians can come out and get you cooling again! You’ll see why we’re Tampa’s highest rated AC company!

    • Did your air conditioner mysteriously stop running?

      How about you give this DIY a try before paying us or any other air conditioning company? Just about anyone can do it. The only tool you’ll need is a shop vac, which you can purchase for as low as $40. Hint – shop vacs are much cheaper than visits from an air conditioning company!

      The number one cause of an air conditioner “not working” is actually not anything to do with the air conditioner itself. Instead, the culprit is often a clog in the condensation drain line. Ironically, the fact that your AC is not running may be an indication that it is working exactly as it should. You see, a clogged drain line activates a safety switch to shut down your air conditioner. In short, this process is in place to prevent water from the clogged drain line from overflowing and flooding the area your indoor portion of your AC is located. Some air conditioners are even located in attic spaces. Subsequently, you can imagine the costly damage that could result from an overflowing drain line in your attic!