With summer just around the corner, it's important to prep your air conditioning unit and get it in shape before the summer heat hits. You'd hate to come home from a long, hot day at work and find that the inside of your house is hotter than the air outside. Preparing your air conditioning unit for the upcoming season is a good idea to prevent this type of breakdown from happening. See below for helpful tips to get your a/c unit in shape before summer.
Change Your Filter
It's always a good idea to change your air filter at least once per month, or more often if you have pets in your home. Be sure to change this filter, or at least check it before turning on your a/c unit for the first time. Hold the filter up to the light and if you can't see light through it, change it. Replace it with the same type and size filter, and pay attention to the way you took it out - it needs to be replaced in the same way. There are sometimes arrows on the filter that tell you which way to insert it. The air filter is responsible for trapping dust and allergens, preventing them from being blown around your home.
Clean The Condensing Coils
The condensing coils are the coils around your unit. Spray down these coils using a garden hose (not a power washer, as the pressure can damage the fins). Remove as much dust, dirt, grass clippings and other debris as possible. If you have some fins that are dented, you can use a butter knife to try and straighten them out. If you can't straighten them, you can hire a professional to do this job for you, especially if you have a lot of dented fins, as they can be blocking the air flow to your unit. Be sure to take the time to clean up the area around your unit as well. Remove tall shrubbery, flowers and weeds that can be blocking the air flow to your unit.
Free Up Vents Inside
Those floor vents (or wall vents) should never be blocked with furniture, toys or other items. Blocking these vents can cause a disturbance in air flow, making the air in your home uneven. It can also cause your system to work over-time, which can eventually lead to a breakdown.
Check Your Unit For Problems
If you have any issues with air-flow, check the vents and filter, but if these aren't the problem, it could be an issue with the unit itself. Check for any ice on your coils, or bent or broken hoses and tubes leading away from your unit. If you see a problem, be sure to contact a professional HVAC company to have your ac repaired.
Schedule An Inspection
Before the beginning of the season, you can also contact a professional HVAC company to have your system inspected. A technician can come out to take a look at your unit and be sure your unit is in working order before you turn it on for the season.
Be sure to get your unit in shape before the summer heat hits to prevent a breakdown from happening at the peak of the season.