AC systems are one of the most significant home investments you’ll make, so it makes sense to take a little extra time and care to maintain them properly. Many homeowners might be tempted to keep resetting the thermostat when their unit isn’t cooling well enough, but that can eventually lead to bigger problems. That’s why we’re here with some handy AC maintenance tips to help you better prepare your system for the coming hot months. The following is a list of how a professional would maintain your AC unit. Keep in mind that doing some of this work yourself can void a warranty.
1. Change Your Air Filters
Air filtration is essential to keeping your AC unit running at its optimum level, and changing your air filter is the best way to keep your system running at peak efficiency. A clogged filter can decrease cool airflow by up to 30%, so it’s a relatively simple maintenance task that should be done every two to three months for the best results.
2. Clean the Condenser Coil
A clogged condenser coil can lead to abysmal performance from your unit. Cleaning it regularly, therefore, is essential. Dirt, leaves, and other debris can quickly build up on this part of your AC system if you don’t take a few moments to clean it off in between uses.
3. Inspect the Condensate Line
The condensate line is made of flexible tubing that keeps the condensate from dripping down on the floor as air flows through your system. This line can become clogged with dirt, hair, and other debris, which can cause a mess in your home. A quick checkup will help you prevent any major problems from occurring with this part of your unit.
4. Lubricate the Motor
You should lubricate your motor regularly to keep it running smoothly and without problems because too much buildup can lead to reduced cooling capabilities. It’s a quick maintenance tip that can go a long way towards maintaining the quality of your unit.
5. Check the Fins
Fins on the condenser are designed to be standing for proper ventilation, but these fins can become misaligned over time if you aren’t careful. They should be straight and even for the best performance from your AC unit. Take a few minutes to ensure they’re in good shape.
6. Check Your Capacitor
If you don’t maintain your capacitor, it can fail to operate properly, and in some cases, it could even cause a fire. A capacitor is designed to maintain the voltage needed for proper AC operation, so it’s important to have the unit replaced by a professional if it looks worn out or if you notice sparks coming from it.
7. Clean the Evaporator Coil
The evaporator coil is the part of your system that transfers the heat from your air conditioning unit into the air, and cleaning this part helps keep it working at its maximum efficiency. It’s a relatively simple and time-consuming task that takes about an hour to complete but can make a huge difference in maintaining proper temperature levels in your home.
8. Check Your Thermostat
The thermostat is one of the most essential parts of a home’s air conditioning unit. It’s important that you check its functionality every time. Extreme temperatures and/or humidity levels can cause the wiring to break down over time. Inspect it for any strange or loose connections to prevent future problems.
A faulty thermostat could cause your system to be out of balance and work improperly. Make sure to check yours regularly for any issues. You can set your thermostat a few degrees higher during the summer and a few degrees lower during the winter for better control over your unit.
9. Check Your Ducts
Your ducts are designed to safely transfer heated or cooled air throughout your home, but they can become clogged or damaged over time due to improper installation or several other problems. Take a few moments every once in a while to look for any issues with your ductwork, such as tears or holes that need to be patched up for the best results.
Maintaining the quality of your ductwork is crucial because an outdated or damaged system can lead to energy loss that affects both heating and cooling. Checking this part of your system could help you save a lot of money over time.
10. Check Your System for Leaks
One of the most essential parts of proper AC maintenance is preventing leaks that can eventually cause a lot of damage to your system. This can be as simple as ensuring that all the panels are securely fastened to your uni. Improper installation could lead to cracks and other issues.
11. Check Your Refrigerant Levels
Refrigerant is used in your air conditioning system to help the cooling process, which means ensuring your unit stays properly filled is essential. This should be done once a year.
If you notice any strange smells, hear any odd sounds, or experience your system functioning in a strange way, you should have your refrigerant levels evaluated and tested immediately as soon as possible.
12. Check and Replace Damaged Components
If you see any discoloration or corrosion on any parts of your system, it’s time for immediate repair. All parts on your unit can suffer from wear and tear over time, so it’s important to take action as soon as possible if anything looks out of place. Call one of our technicians to replace any damaged components.
13. Keep the Sun Away From the System
The sun can cause a lot of damage to your AC unit if it’s left in direct sunlight for too long, and it’s essential to keep this side of the system away from any windows and other heat sources. It could also cause damage if you simultaneously leave it running in a hot and humid environment.
You should try to keep your AC system in a shady area so that the sun can’t damage the unit or its parts. This will help prevent any future problems and help you extend the lifespan of your system.
14. Keep Plants Cut Back Around Your Unit
If you have a nearby garden or yard, there’s a huge chance you’ve already noticed some damage to your AC unit. A clogged exterior filter can cause problems for your system and make it work less efficiently, and debris from leaves, pine needles, and other plants can also fall into the condenser coil and block the airflow.
Overall, keeping your AC unit in good shape is fairly easy, and you can prevent a lot of problems by making sure to schedule annual maintenance with a professional who will do these simple maintenance tasks. If you’re experiencing problems with your air conditioning unit, it’s best to contact a professional for repair services as soon as possible. We offer heating, air conditioning, and air quality services to Alabaster, AL residents. Contact 3D Air Services, LLC today to learn more.