The summer heat is well on its way. The last thing you want is for your air conditioning unit to break down on a sweltering day! How do you prevent that? Proper A/C maintenance! Here’s a guide to keeping your unit working. Don’t forget to check out our directory of air conditioning experts for help!
Do you even know what your air conditioner looks like on the inside? If you’re a DIYer and want to do some A/C maintenance yourself, then it’s important to know about the working parts that make up your air conditioning unit. Take a look at this diagram:
Filter Maintenance & Replacement
The air filters inside an air conditioning unit are an important component of the unit. They should be changed every three months. Since they’re a magnet for dust and dirt, they easily get clogged, which can cause the following problems:
- Restricted air flow;
- Reduction in energy efficiency;
- Re-circulation of dust in your home.
Changing an air filter is easy. Check out this video for how to do it:
If you’re having problems locating the air filter in the unit and don’t know what kind of filter to buy, then you should give an air conditioning expert a call. Our directory allows you to find an expert in your neighbourhood!
Clean the condenser coils
You know that big, unattractive metal box that’s sitting outside your house? That’s your central air conditioner’s condenser unit. Ideally, it should be covered up during the winter season to protect it from the snow and other debris from getting in. In the summertime, however, it’s common for leaves and other yard debris to get stuck inside the grills. To keep your air conditioning unit working properly throughout the summer, you need to clean it.
To keep your home cool, the coils remove heat and moisture from the warm air that’s blown into the unit. The coil then cools the air before it’s expelled. Like the filters, the coils can be clogged with dirt and debris, which also obstructs air flow. That’s why they need to be cleaned on a regular basis. Here’s how:
- Make sure the unit is turned off.
- Remove the side and top panels of the grills covering the condenser unit using a screwdriver or nut driver.
- Using a soft brush on a vacuum, clean the coils from outside of the unit. Take precaution not to break or bend the coils.
- Once the exterior of the coils are clean, vacuum the coils from the inside.
- Using a coil cleaner which can be purchased at your local hardware store, spray onto the coils from the inside. Be very careful not to spray the fan or the electrical components.
This DIY pro cleaned the condenser coils on his own. Not only does he walk us through the process, but tells you what tools you’ll need to complete the project.
If it looks like too much work or you’re worried you don’t have enough time to complete the project yourself, then it might be time to call in the pros. Don’t forget to check out our extensive directory of air conditioning service professionals who can provide routine maintenance like cleaning the condenser coils for you!
Straighten any bent coils
The aluminum finds on the condenser coils can become easily bent when doing routine maintenance. A small band can restrict air flow through the coil. Talk to an c about purchasing what’s called a fin tool. It’s a tiny comb that will straighten the bent coils, allowing your A/C unit to work properly throughout the rest of the hot summer season.
Leave these jobs to the professional
Keeping up with air conditioning unit maintenance is essential to prevent the unit from failing when you need it most. But there are certain jobs that should not be attempted even by the handiest DIYer around. Contact a technician to do the following:
- Check for correct amount of refrigerant (a liquid agent that cools and dehumidifies indoor air);
- Test for refrigerant leaks using a leak detector;
- Measure air flow through evaporator coil;
- Oil motors and check belts for tightness/wear;
- Check to see if thermostat is accurate.
Is your air conditioning unit in working order? Find out by hiring a professional to take a look at it and conduct routine maintenance for you! Our directory of air conditioning specialists can conduct a check-up and keep your unit in working order.
If you’re not sure who to hire, our directory will show you technicians working in your area. Plus, our site is armed with reviews, so you can learn first-hand about other homeowner experiences upon hiring a air conditioning technician.