Winter may be here now, but it will pass before you know it. When that happens, you'll want your air conditioner to be ready. The following tips will help you get a jump start on ac service and maintenance, so your air conditioner will be in peak condition when the warmer weather arrives.
Change the Filter
HVAC air filters remove pollutants from the ducts and prevent grime from building up on the mechanical components of the air conditioner and furnace. The filter for your unit is shared between the heater and the air conditioner, which means that your filter needs to be changed regularly during the cooling and heating season. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends completing this task every 3 months or more, so if it's been longer than 3 months, now is the time to replace your filter. Without a clean air filter, dirt can easily build up on the coils of your air conditioner.
The HVAC filter is often found in a slot between the blower and the return air duct. To change the filter, turn off your heater or air conditioner, which ever you happen to be running right then, and remove the old filter from its place. Take the filter to a home improvement center or a hardware store and buy a replacement that matches the old filter. Once the filter is back at your house, put it in its place and turn the climate control back on.
Get a Tune Up
Getting regular AC service is important for the proper functioning of your air conditioner. Winter is a good time to have your air conditioner serviced by a repair professional because you can have it done at your leisure without worry that the service time will conflict with a time when the air conditioner should be cooling your home.
While the AC service person is at your home, have him or her check your ducts for leaks. Leaky ducts can wear down your air conditioner by forcing it to run harder than necessary to cool your home.
Clean the Coils
When the weather warms up enough that the temperatures outside aren't freezing, cut power to the air conditioner and remove the cover from the condenser. Wash down the coils with a strong jet of water from a hose. If the unit has a lot of leaves and debris inside, use a shop vacuum to suck up the leaves from your unit before spraying down the inside. Cleaning the coils in this way helps your air conditioner run more efficiently.
For more information about how you can get started on air conditioner maintenance for the new year, speak with an AC repair professional. He or she can give you tips more specific to your air conditioner.
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