With the warmer days of summer just around the corner, your air conditioner will soon be seeing a lot of use. If it’s not properly maintained, however, you might find yourself braving the summer with a busted AC.
To keep your unit in tip-top shape, we’ve prepared this guide on how to prepare your air conditioner for summer.
Schedule a professional inspection
Unlike your other appliances, your AC is not a set-it-and-forget-it product. If you want to maximize its service life, you’ll have to maintain it regularly especially when the seasons change. Given its complex mechanisms, however, it’s best to hire a professional to inspect your unit annually. If the inspector finds any issues, he or she can address them immediately and prevent bigger (and more expensive) problems down the line.
Clear debris away
As the condenser unit is located outside your home, it’s liable to collecting debris such as twigs, branches, and leaves. When detritus surrounds the condenser, your AC will not operate efficiently and has to work harder to keep you cool, which can drive up your power bill. Keeping your condenser clean takes only a few minutes but it will make a big improvement in your AC’s performance.
Replace your filters
Your AC has a built-in filter that can trap bigger particulates so that you and your family don’t breathe them in. That said, filters can’t do their job properly if they are unclean or saturated. Unfortunately, many people forget about their AC filters when maintaining their units. A good rule of thumb is to clean filters every month and to replace them every 90 days to keep your AC running smoothly.
Unclog your condensate line
When your AC cools your home, indoor humidity naturally increases. However, your unit draws this excess humidity away and channels it through the condensate line. If you see water puddles in your drain pain, however, it could mean that your condensate line is clogged. As often happens, the moist environment causes algae and muck to accumulate, thus causing a blockage. Giving the pipe a quick clean with a thin, long brush should solve the problem.
Check your thermostat
While your AC does the heavy lifting of cooling your home, your thermostat plays a critical role, too. If it’s not functioning properly, your AC might work overtime and hike up your electric consumption. Once you verify that it’s problem-free, be sure to set your home’s temperature for the summer. Most experts say that 78℉ is the ideal setting as it keeps your family comfortable without costing you a lot of money. Of course, feel free to tweak the setting as you see fit.
It goes without saying that you should power off your AC before doing any maintenance work. If you follow these simple air conditioner maintenance tips, you won’t have to worry about your unit breaking down on you at the height of summer.
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