With summer coming to an end in Cambridge, now is a good time to get a kick start on air conditioner maintenance.
If you haven’t cleaned it lately, it could be blocked with dirt and yard waste. This accumulation can limit your unit’s efficiency and cause it to malfunction. Or wear it down sooner.
We recommend having your air conditioning system professionally tuned-up once a year. Why? A clean system can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on electric expenses.
Regular AC maintenance also helps our technicians spot and handle small issues before they turn into high-priced problems.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing
Some of the work we do involves:
- Inspecting the blower, motor, drain line and coils
- Confirming pressure and temperature
- Examining lines, refrigerant levels and connections
You can still have service done this fall—and we can get your furnace prepared for heating season too.
There’s also some work you can do alone between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to get the grime off your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a few pieces on your indoor HVAC system.
Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?
Tips for Cleaning the Outdoor AC Unit
Select a warm day to wash your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is ideal. That way, you can test the unit 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
Follow these Steps for Cleaning the Outside Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Stop the juice to your air conditioner at the breaker box.
2. Clean the Outside
Empty waste from the unit. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.
Then run the vacuum to gently clean the metallic fins. These components are also called condenser coils and transfer heat away from your unit.
You need to be careful with these fine coils. Bent or crumpled fins can affect efficiency.
3. Fix Bent Fins
Use a butter knife to straighten warped fins. You can also buy a fin comb from an appliance part store. A pro from Pliescott HVAC Services LLC should fix severe damage.
4. Clean the Inside
After taking out the fan, pull out leaves and other yard litter. Then mop the inside of the system with a wet cloth.
The only coil cleaner you have to have is water. Use slight pressure from a hose nozzle to rinse the fins, showering water from the inside out. Reinstall the fan once you’re completed.
5. Test Your Air Conditioner
Now it’s time to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not operating properly, give us a call at 410-228-4822.
Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later
Three Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Cut the power to your furnace at the breaker box.
2. Check Your Filter
Furnace filters need to be exchanged every several months, depending on the kind you use.
Can’t remember when you last replaced yours? Remove it and tilt it toward the light. If you can’t see light through it, get a new one.
3. Clean the Inside
Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.
Then inspect your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a flexible plastic tube. If it’s moldy, you can sanitize it by draining diluted bleach through the tube to flush the line. Or you can buy a new tube.
Scrub 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
Never Forget About Maintenance Again
Annual air conditioner maintenance from Pliescott HVAC Services LLC can make your system more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide handy service agreements, so you won’t forget to plan your regular tune-up!