As the season turns, homeowners face the need to transition their home’s air conditioning system from the cooler months to the heat of summer. Properly preparing your AC for summer weather changes is crucial to ensuring optimal performance, comfort, and unit longevity. Taking a proactive approach to AC maintenance can help your AC last longer and save on energy bills.
Getting Your AC Summer-ready
Clear the Surrounding Area
Clear any debris, leaves, or branches around the outdoor condenser unit. The unit could get clogged in winter and spring, hampering its efficiency. A clean and clear space allows for better airflow and efficient operation.
Clean or Replace Filters
Air filters play a crucial role in maintaining air quality and ensuring the efficient operation of the AC. Dirty or clogged filters can strain the AC unit and reduce its efficiency. It’s important to clean or replace filters regularly, especially before the summer season starts.
Check the AC Coils
The AC unit’s coils can collect dirt over time, reducing the system’s ability to absorb heat. Checking the evaporator and condenser coils and cleaning them if necessary should be a part of your summer prep routine.
Maintaining Your AC During Summer
Adjust the Thermostat
Adjust the thermostat settings to suit the summer temperature. A programmable thermostat can be a handy tool, allowing you to set different temperatures for different times of the day, thus saving energy without compromising comfort.
Ensure Proper Insulation
Proper home insulation can reduce the load on your AC, as it helps keep the cool and hot air inside. Check for any leaks or gaps in doors or windows, and seal them to prevent the loss of cool air.
Regularly inspect your AC unit during the summer for any signs of trouble, such as strange noises, water leaks, or insufficient cooling. Early detection of problems can prevent more serious issues down the line.
Post-Summer AC Care: Unwinding After the Heatwave
As the scorching summer days give way to the cooler autumn breeze, it’s essential not to neglect your AC system. The post-summer period presents an opportunity to tend to your AC after its heavy usage during the hot months, setting the stage for its optimal performance next summer.
Cleaning the Outdoor Unit
The outdoor condenser unit can accumulate dirt, debris, and leaves over the summer months. This debris can clog the system and inhibit optimal function. It’s important to clean the unit, ensuring any accumulated debris is removed. A gentle spray with a garden hose can often do the job without damaging the delicate fins of the condenser. However, be sure to turn off the unit’s power before cleaning.
Covering the Outdoor Unit
Once the unit is clean and dry, consider covering it to protect it from winter elements like snow, ice, and even falling leaves. Use a breathable material designed for this purpose rather than plastic, as plastic can trap moisture and lead to corrosion. Remember, the cover should only shield the top and a few inches of the sides to ensure continued airflow and prevent condensation buildup.
Inspection of the AC System
Post-summer is an excellent time to inspect the entire AC system for any wear and tear, such as cracks, rust, or other damage. This is also the time to check the refrigerant level and top it off if necessary.
Scheduling a Professional Checkup
A professional maintenance check is recommended after the summer season. A trained technician will inspect the AC unit, perform necessary cleaning and maintenance, and detect potential problems. This can include tasks like checking the coolant level, inspecting and cleaning the coils, checking the thermostat and controls, inspecting the ductwork for any potential leaks, and lubricating the moving parts if necessary.
A Proactive Approach to AC Care
Preparing your AC for summer and maintaining it post-summer can seem like a chore, but the benefits of a well-functioning, efficient, and long-lasting AC are well worth the effort. It’s all about being proactive, understanding your AC system, and knowing when to seek professional help.
For comprehensive AC tune-ups, regular maintenance, or any AC-related concerns, don’t hesitate to contact Clarks Mechanical. Trust the professionals at Clarks Mechanical to keep your AC running smoothly through the summer and beyond. After all, a comfortable home is a happy home. Let Clarks Mechanical help make your home the relaxing sanctuary you deserve. Contact Clarks Mechanical today for all your AC needs!