Air conditioning repair and maintenance guide for the summer
Have you ever considered that boxy air conditioning condenser in your backyard? It’s easy to overlook that fact that your air conditioner needs regular maintenance to perform effectively and efficiently. Neglecting your system can lead to unexpected, costly air conditioning repairs, higher energy bills – and an uncomfortably warm home.
We recommend a full seasonal tune-up before you turn on the AC for summer, but here’s some tips you can do yourself to get a jump on air conditioning season.
Replace (or clean) filters
Dirty or dust-laden filters restrict air flow and cause your system to work harder than necessary. The result can be higher electric bills, poor cooling, frozen evaporator coils, and dirty ductwork.
It’s a good idea to replace disposable HVAC filters at least every 6 months, and more often if you live in an area that’s prone to dust, pollen or wind. Be sure to replace with the correct size and type, which is usually printed on the paper frame of the old filter. If you have a permanent or washable filter, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s guide for cleaning to avoid damaging the filter material.
Keep the condenser clear of debris
Most condensers are installed in the ‘utility’ area of your yard, and overlooked when it comes to general yard clean up. Inspect the area around the condenser and remove any leaves, twigs, grass clippings, or debris. For your AC to perform optimally it needs a good cleaning at least once a year, to include a washdown to remove dirt and debris around the fins. If you’re not sure how best to clean the condenser, get help from a professional.
Consider upgrading your thermostat
A programmable or smart thermostat is an excellent investment for those still using a traditional thermostat. A programmable thermostat allows you to set a schedule for the temperature in your home and forget about it. Some smart thermostats are equipped with room occupancy sensors that can automatically reduce the temperature when the home is unoccupied. Others be controlled thru an app on your smartphone or integrate with smart devices like Alexa or a home bridge/hub. There are many choices available in programmable and smart thermostats – just be sure the one you choose is fully compatible with your home’s HVAC system. If you aren’t sure, check with your trusted HVAC professional.
A programmable or smart thermostat can help you save energy and money, increase comfort and make your HVAC more easily interactive.
Inspect wiring & insulation
Have a look at the wiring connections on and around your AC unit, paying attention to disconnected, frayed or obviously loose wires. Check the integrity of the insulation on your outside refrigerant lines. If you see a problem, contact an HVAC professional to repair the situation.