We all know how important it is to keep our homes comfortable, especially during those hot summer months. But did you know that routine maintenance and care of your air conditioning system can have numerous benefits?
Regular servicing of your AC unit can improve its performance, extend its lifespan, and increase energy efficiency. Not to mention, it can also help improve the quality of your indoor air. So what are you waiting for? Check out these six practical air conditioner maintenance suggestions to keep your home cool and pleasant during the summer!
Clean or Replace Your Filters
Cleaning your AC air filters is a major part of air conditioner maintenance. A clean filter increases indoor air quality, especially in ducted systems. Because the airflow cycle circulates and recirculates the air within, a filthy filter can affect the quality of the air you breathe.
Filters that are dirty or clogged can affect the performance and lifespan of your HVAC system. Follow these DIY steps to clean or replace your air conditioner filters:
- Turn off your air conditioner.
- To discover and remove the filter, locate and access the service panel.
- Permanent filters should be rinsed with running water from a garden hose or sink. Allow the filter to completely air out before reinserting it.
- Replace worn-out disposable filters with fresh ones.
Check and Clean the Condensate Drain
Over time, your HVAC unit’s drain can become clogged with matter such as slime, mold, and algae. This blockage can cause condensation from the refrigeration cycle to be expelled less efficiently and may eventually require servicing. To prevent this buildup, regularly cleaning your HVAC unit’s drain line is important.
The condensate drain can become clogged with debris from the evaporator coil or other components inside the unit. Inspect the tray under the coil to see whether water is collecting there. This could be a sign of a blockage somewhere down the line. When you remove air filters, you can notice water pooling.
Locate the end of the drain to clear a blocked HVAC drain and use a vacuum cleaner to suck out the blockage. This technique can often be effective in clearing the drain and allowing it to function properly. However, persistent water leakage may indicate an underlying problem requiring professional investigation.
Clean Your Indoor Unit
Your HVAC unit works hard all year to make your home comfortable. But did you know it can also accumulate dirt, dust, grime, and mold? Due to restricted ventilation, this buildup can provide a musky or moldy odor and poor system efficiency. Wipe your indoor unit regularly using a cloth, slightly dampened washer, or feather duster. You may clean and sterilize your air conditioner with an antibacterial solution.
When cleaning your unit, spray it first and then wipe it down the shell. Spraying liquid directly onto your unit is not recommended. After disassembly, you can use specialized equipment to clean your HVAC unit chemically. Due to technical and safety concerns, this task is best left to certified and experienced HVAC experts.
Clean and Clear the Outdoor Unit
The outdoor AC unit is a vital part of the cooling system for your home. You should do a few things regularly to keep it running smoothly and efficiently. First, remove any debris or objects blocking airflow to the unit. This includes storage boxes, lawn equipment, trash cans, etc. Second, wipe down the unit with a damp cloth to remove any dirt, dust, or grime that has built up on it. Third, have the condenser coils professionally cleaned regularly – DIY cleaning can damage them and reduce efficiency. Finally, check the electrical components regularly to ensure they are in good working order.
HVAC copper piping should be inspected regularly to ensure the insulation is in good condition. This is significant because the piping distributes refrigerant between the outdoor and indoor units, and insulation aids in preserving thermal efficiency. Wrapped around the piping is usually black or white foam rubber insulation.
When inspecting the insulation, search for signs of damage caused by harsh weather, vermin, rats, or insects. Any exposed insulated AC pipework should be reported to an HVAC professional.
Schedule Annual Maintenance
Your HVAC system is one of the most important parts of your home, so it’s important to keep it running smoothly with annual tune-ups. HVAC specialists can perform various maintenance tasks during a tune-up, such as examining different parts of the system, troubleshooting common issues, lubricating moving parts, and recharging refrigerant. This preventative service helps keep your AC running efficiently and can save you money on utility bills in the long run.