As far as household maintenance is concerned, regularly scheduled maintenance for your air conditioning unit should top your list this summer. It’s your best chance at staying cool throughout the season and avoiding dreaded breakdowns. But while there are a number of air conditioner maintenance tasks homeowners can do on their won, some tasks are best left to properly trained and licensed professionals. You should never hesitate to call a professional any time you are uncomfortable with performing AC maintenance tasks yourself.
Let’s take a look at some easy air conditioner maintenance tips, brought to you by a trusted professional provider of AC service in St. Louis, MO.
Replace or clean the air filter
One of the most important air conditioner maintenance needs is replacing the air filter (or cleaning it if it’s a reusable filter). Depending on filter type and location, you should clean or replace it once every one to three months during heavy-use seasons. The air filter will be located either behind the return air grille on the wall or ceiling, in a slot near the top, bottom or side of your furnace or inside the blower compartment of the furnace or air handler.
An air filter that is full of dirt, dust, pollen and other allergen particles will significantly decrease the airflow. Your system will have to work harder than it should. As such, your energy bills will go up, and you’ll be breathing in more unhealthy particles.
Inspect wiring and components
Before starting any air conditioner maintenance, it’s imperative that you turn off the power at the main breaker or disconnect it at the outdoor unit. Remove the access panel on the condensing unit and look for signs of overheating, such as burnt or blackened wires and melted insulation on the wires. Make sure all electrical connections are tight, and replace the contactor switch if it has excessive pitting. Call your local AC expert to replace any components you don’t feel comfortable replacing on your own.
Check the condenser unit fan
With the power off, check the fan that’s mounted on the top of the outside condenser unit to ensure it’s still in good condition. Fan blades should not have any cracks or chips; if there’s visible damage to a blade, replace it. In regards to older air conditioning units, the fan motor bearings may need to be oiled regularly.
Clean the outside of the unit
You need to provide a clear space all around your AC unit for it to do its job right. Remove anything that has collected on or near the outside of the unit, like leaves, grass clippings, garbage, dust and dirt, as debris can decrease system capacity and reduce airflow. Make sure the power to the unit is shut off, and then use a garden hose to gently wash away debris. Take care not to damage or bend the fins on the coil.
If you need AC service in St. Louis, MO this summer, don’t hesitate to call Ashley Brothers Heating & Cooling!