With summer ending in Laurel, now is a good time to get a head start on air conditioner maintenance.
If you haven’t washed it recently, it could be blocked with dirt and yard waste. This collection can reduce your unit’s efficiency and cause it to break down. Or wear it down sooner.
We suggest having your air conditioning system professionally tuned-up every year. Why? A clean unit can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on electric bills.
Routine AC maintenance also helps our technicians discover and address minor issues before they become expensive problems.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing
Some of the work we perform consists of:
- Inspecting the blower, motor, drain line and coils
- Watching pressure and temperature
- Reviewing lines, refrigerant amounts and connections
You can still have service done this fall—and we can get your furnace ready for heating season too.
There’s also some work you can do on your own between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to clean your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a couple of components on your indoor HVAC system.
Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?
Cleaning Out the Outside AC Unit
Choose a warm day to scrub your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is best. That way, you can run your equipment once you’ve cleaned it.
You’ll only need a handful of things:
- Wet-dry vacuum and hose with a soft brush attachment
- Butter knife
- Damp rag
- Small, round paintbrush
- Replacement furnace filter (if necessary)
Related: How AC Repair and Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money
Five Steps to Clean the Outside Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Stop the juice to your air conditioner at the breaker box.
2. Clean the Outside
Take out waste from the system. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.
Then run the vacuum to slowly clean the metallic fins. These components are also called condenser coils and transfer heat away from your unit.
You need to be cautious with these fine coils. Bent or crushed fins can affect efficiency.
3. Fix Bent Fins
Use a butter knife to straighten bent fins. You can also use a fin comb from an appliance part website. A pro from H&C Heating and Cooling should take care of large amounts of damage.
4. Clean the Inside
After taking out the fan, fish out leaves and other yard litter. Then mop the inside of the system with a wet sponge.
The only coil cleaner you need is water. Use slight pressure from a hose nozzle to wash the fins, showering water from the inside out. Replace the fan once you’re finished.
5. Test Your Air Conditioner
Now it’s time to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not running like it should, give us a call at 301-960-3247.
Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later
After, Three Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Turn off the power to your furnace at the breaker box.
2. Check Your Filter
Furnace filters must be replaced every several months, depending on the kind you use.
Not sure when you last put in a new one? Remove it and angle it toward the light. If you can’t see light through it, buy a new one.
3. Clean the Inside
Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.
Then take a look at your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a supple plastic tube. If it’s dirty, you can freshen it by flowing watered-down bleach through the tube to flush the line. Or you can get a new tube.
Wash the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Connect the drain tube and switch the power back on.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall
Don’t Forget About Maintenance Again
Annual air conditioner maintenance from H&C Heating and Cooling can make your equipment more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide handy service agreements, so you won’t forget to schedule your routine maintenance!