The Ant and the Air Conditioner – Part 2

Crazy Ants have invaded South Florida, and now they are in Palm Beach County. Several years ago, the first infestations were noted within a few miles of the Port of Palm Beach, and they are spreading from there. Like other ants, they are attracted to electrical equipment and warm secluded places where they will swarm or nest. While this species is particularly difficult, any of the common ants can cause disruption and expensive damage to your air conditioner unit.

The story goes something like this. It’s a pleasant summer day, and the air conditioning is cooling just as it should. Then, you get that feeling that something is not quite right: the thermostat is set for cooling, air is coming out of the grill, but it’s not cool air. Outside, the unit isn’t running. What could be the problem? It could be ants.

It’s no surprise that ants live, work, and travel in colonies. Wherever you find one, you will find hundreds or thousands more working together. We admire that about the ant, but it is also the reason they can do damage to your air conditioner. A little-known fact is, ants are attracted to electrical devices. The reason is somewhat of a mystery, but the most common thought is that their little antennae sense the electric fields around relays and electrical wires and the ants are drawn to those electrical fields.

Eventually, one ant gets caught in the high voltage switch as it closes and thousands of watts of power surge through the wiring to the compressor. One toasted ant is rarely a problem, but then they come by the tens and hundreds they come together and commit ant-suicide. There is another mystery here: are they trying to rescue their friend, or they attracted buy chemical distress signals, or are they just plain accident-prone? No one knows the reason, but the masses of ants are enough to stop the electrical flow to your compressor. Your home gets warm, you call for service, and you pay for new parts.

The simple solution is maintenance, both do-it-yourself and professional. Keep the areas around your air conditioner free of sand and debris that will attract ants, and have your pest control company treat the area to repel ants. Also, call twice a year to have a thorough maintenance inspection by a licensed professional.

Your best approach is to subscribe to a Comfort Club Membership with Complete Comfort. They will make certain your maintenance is performed as-needed by a technician trained to recognize potential problems. They will make recommendations to best ensure reliable cooling for months and years to come. Call (561) 531-5659 today.

THE SAME HIGH-VOLTAGE COMPONENTS THAT KILL ANTS ARE DEADLY TO HUMANS.

A TRAINED SERVICE PROFESSIONAL MUST BE CALLED FOR SERVICE AND REPAIRS TO THE AIR CONDITIONING EQUIPMENT.

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