As the temperature begins to heat up, the last thing you want to worry about it whether or not your air conditioning unit is working. After months of sitting, unattended through winter and spring weather, your AC unit likely needs a little tender love and care! Here are 5 helpful ways that you can prepare your AC for the summer heat.
- First, be sure to clean, replace or repair all filters in your AC unit. You will need to clean or replace your furnace or air-handler filters at least 2 times each year for optimal efficiency. When filters are clogged with dust, they can reduce the air quality of your home and limit how much cool air is able to be sent into your house to keep the temperature comfortable. This can also begin to circulate dust and other allergens throughout your home leading to allergy symptoms or even respiratory problems over time.
- Next you should clean the air conditioning condenser. This is usually located outside and could be covered with debris, leaves or dirt if not covered properly. Many homeowners choose to cover their condenser with a tarp to keep it protected. A condenser is the large fan in a metal box to keep your AC unit working. If debris gets into the fan blade or coils, it could cause an obstruction and cut off the flow of air. Be sure to clean the condenser out effectively to prevent problems. You can use a coil cleaning product, and may even choose to hose the condenser down with a strong hose to remove stubborn debris. You should then scoop out debris and any other loose particle that may have made their way into the condenser.
- Check the coolant lines. These are refrigerant tubes or pipes that will run from the evaporator on the air handler to the condenser unit outside. Usually a foam coolant line insulation is used to cover the lines in order to reduce the loss of energy when the AC unit is being used. You should check out these lines and look for any wear and tear. You may notice areas where the insulation is ripped, frayed or missing. These should be replaced as soon as possible to keep your AC unit as energy efficient as possible. To repair this problem, you can install foam insulation sleeves or you can even wrap the lines in a spiral manner using foam insulation tape.
- If you have a window unit, you will want to make sure it is properly installed. It should sit firmly in the window and be attached with support brackets in order toe ensure safety and reliability. Next, make sure that the hole that leads out is covered all the way to ensure that air isn’t coming in or out of the window or wall.
- Finally, be sure to check any other replaceable parts of your air conditioner besides the filters. Be sure that the exhaust hose is not ripped or torn so that the unit is venting properly. You should also check extension panels and remote control batteries. Some of these repairs can be done by a homeowner, however more serious problems should be handled by a trained professional.
Keeping your AC unit in good condition and prepping it for the summer months will help you enjoy a cool, comfortable home while also ensuring the longevity of your unit. If you don’t know much about operating heat pumps in different seasons, you may want to hire a heating and cooling expert to help you repair any heating and cooling issues you may have.