We can’t just expect an air conditioner to run every day, all week – and in some places, all year – to not need a little TLC once in a while. Air conditioners are complex machines with many moving parts that regularly need some maintenance. Before calling up a professional company, know that there are steps you yourself can take to keep your AC running smoothly. We’re going to share some basic AC maintenance tips with you to get you started. Let’s hit it!
AC filters are the first and most crucial aspect of your air conditioner that requires consistent maintenance. When your AC filters are clean, you’ve got an air conditioner that’s running as efficiently as possible. Unfortunately, filters get dirty, and this requires them to be cleaned or, in some cases, replaced.
An obstructed airflow means that air sometimes bypasses the filter. As a result, the air reaching the evaporator coil is dirty. Your air conditioner’s air coil is going to have a compromised heat-absorbing capacity. This is why replacing filters that are clogged or dirty with clean ones helps lower the energy consumption by between 5% and 15%
AC filters are commonly found on the return duct’s length or in the AC itself. Some AC filters are reusable, while others may need replacing. Again, this is something to inspect in your own AC unit.
Evaporator and condenser coils continuously collect dirt throughout the AC’s use. This means they need to be cleaned regularly to avoid soiling the coils. Beyond just protecting the coils, you also want your AC to be working efficiently. When the coils are dirty, airflow is reduced, and dirt actually insulates the coil, which diminishes its ability to absorb heat. So check the coils annually or multiple times a year and clean them if necessary.
For outdoor AC units, you can remove the panels covering the coils on the sides of your unit. On window AC units, you can find the coils on the back. Buy a can of AC coil cleaner and follow the instructions for spraying it on the coils. Once sprayed, these cleaners often foam up, pushing dirt and debris out of the coil. Then you can use a hose to rinse your coils, though some cleaners are “self-rinsing”, so read the instructions carefully.
On your evaporator and condenser coils are aluminum fins that bend very easily. When bent, they block the airflow through your air conditioner’s coil. As easy as the fins bend, the easier they are to bend back to normal. Some tools sold by wholesalers do the job quickly and effectively.
AC Condensate Drains
Another straightforward task you can do once in a while is to take a stiff wire and pass it through the air conditioner’s drain channels. When drain channels are clogged, it prevents the unit from making any effective humidity reduction. This may not sound like that big of a deal, but the excess moisture ends up discoloring carpets and walls.
For window units, always ensure the window seals between the AC and window frame are as airtight as they can be during the cooling season. This is may seem obvious but even small gaps mean that cool air is escaping your home.
What To Do When Winter Comes Around
Winter can be a rough period for air conditioners. Good AC maintenance is to cover your room or home’s air conditioners or, if possible, remove them and store them away for the season. In addition, you want to protect all units, especially outdoor ones, from winter weather and potential debris.
There’s a lot you can do yourself to keep your AC unit working well. But sometimes, despite your best intentions, you need to call in the professionals to help you. There’s no shame in calling for help, especially when it comes to complex systems like air conditioners.
If you need a professional in southeast Wisconsin, we’re the company that will handle your AC maintenance and repair jobs by the book – no funny business! On Time Heating & Cooling has over 200 five-star reviews and all of our technicians are licensed and experienced.
Give us a call or use our online self-scheduling feature today!