About 91% of American households have a window unit or central air unit for their AC. As a result, people all over the country are having to take care of these systems to make sure they work when temperatures soar.
But what are the main AC maintenance tasks that you need to know?
If you’re a new homeowner with central AC, you likely don’t know a lot about your AC system or what you should look for.
Luckily, we are going to give you some really basic tips so that you can avoid future AC problems. Keep reading to learn more.
1. Clear Away Outdoor Debris
Your HVAC system needs to be free of any obstructions in order to function at its highest level. So, make a point to take some time every spring and look for things like:
- Plants growing into the unit
- Yard debris hitting or leaning on the unit
- Dust or vegetative build-up inside the unit
If you notice any of these problems, it’s a good idea to turn off the unit and give it a complete cleaning. You may need to relocate some plants or trees if they are in the way.
Your system will look better after this, but it also will perform better for the rest of the year!
2. Clean and Replace Filters
Each month in high-use seasons, which are typically summer and winter, you’ll want to clean or replace your filters. During the fall and spring, you should still clean them at least once before the season ends.
Disposable filters need to be replaced rather than cleaned, so use a new filter each time. Permanent filters, which are a little more expensive up front, can be cleaned and reused.
The air filter can be found either:
- Behind the return air grill on a wall or ceiling
- In a slot on the bottom, side, or top of the furnace
- Inside the blower compartment of the air handler
If your filter is dusty or dirty, the airflow will decrease, making your AC system work harder than it should.
3. Check the System Wiring and Parts
Even if you’re not terribly familiar with all of your AC unit components, you can still look at the outdoor unit’s wiring to see if anything looks abnormal. Do this at least once per year.
After your condenser unit is turned off, take the access panel off and look for any overheating signs. This may look like melted insulation, blackened or burned wires, or black parts on the walls of the unit.
Look at your electrical connections to see if they are tight.
If you notice anything that doesn’t look quite right when you’re doing this inspection, it’s a good idea to talk with a local HVAC company, such as Lyons Air & Heat, and have them look at the unit before you turn it back on. To avoid being uncomfortable, it may be best to do this annual inspection in the fall or spring months so that you can have the system off without getting too hot or cold inside.
Keep These AC Maintenance Tips in Mind
As a homeowner, it’s important to take care of the main appliances, including your HVAC systems, to make sure that your home is comfortable and safe.
These are just a few basic AC maintenance tricks that you’ll want to add to your regular cleaning and maintenance schedule. When in doubt, make sure that you talk to the professionals to get the help you need with your unit.
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