Just like any piece of machinery, your air conditioner needs some regular maintenance to keep it in top shape. Air conditioner maintenance will help your unit perform better, last longer, keep your home more comfortable, and reduce energy use. Here are our top 5 tips for maintaining your air conditioner.
Tip 1: Preventative maintenance
While there are many things that you can do to maintain your unit, preventative maintenance performed by an HVAC technician will go a long way towards protecting and improving your system. Professional preventative maintenance should be performed annually, preferably before cooling season begins. Your HVAC technician will perform several tasks which are designed to improve performance, extend service life, and increase system efficiency, such as cleaning AC coils, testing thermostat communication, testing for refrigerant leaks, and more.
Tip 2: Change your filter
To maintain proper air flow through your system, your filter needs to be regularly changed. During cooling season, check your filter monthly and replace as needed. A clean filter will allow air to move through the system without the resistance added by debris stuck in the filter, so your system will operate more efficiency.
Tip 3: Keep outdoor units clear
Keep air flowing through your unit by keeping the exterior condenser unit clear of debris and other items. Don’t store patio furniture or outdoor toys near the unit. Clear any vegetation that is growing around your unit. Wash away any yard clippings and debris that have collected on the fins with a garden hose.
Tip 4: Clear the condensate drain
Clean your condensate drip pans and inspect drain lines for clogs regularly. Mold, mildew, and fungus can grow in the drip pan, leading to clogs in the drain pipe. Overflowing drip pans or puddles below the AC unit are signs of clogs. First, turn off power to your unit. Clean the drip pan using a wet/dry vacuum to remove water and debris. Locate the PVC drain pipe, remove the fitting to access the pipe. Use a wet/dry vacuum and garden hose to loosen and remove debris that are clogging the pipe. Water should flow freely through the pipe once the line is clear.
Tip 5: Seal air leaks
Air leaks around the home and in your duct system can be causing your air conditioner to overwork, which uses more energy and stresses the system, which can reduce system operating life. Visually inspect your duct system for disconnected joints, holes, and broken sections of duct; if you find these problems, call us for duct sealing service. Also, look around the interior and exterior of your home for areas where air is leaking out, such as around doors and windows, exterior vent protrusions, and other problem spots.