If there is one thing we have to admit, is that humans are not always the best in taking care of the things that are important. Or alternatively, we don’t always realize how important something is until we lose it. Anyone who has had to spend a single day during the worst of the summer without and AC knows exactly what we’re talking about.
But let’s not be all gloom and doom. We would rather focus on the things you can do right now to ensure your unit works all summer without a hitch. This is not an article on how to troubleshoot you’re air conditioner, it is about giving proper maintenance so you never have a problem to begin with.
Keep your unit clean
Yes, you probably already know this one, but do you actually do it? If the unit is not getting a decent air flow, it will keep pushing itself in order to achieve the temperature you programmed, forcing the system unnecessarily while raising you energy bill.
In this sense, good maintenance includes changing the filters regularly: at least once a month on the busy season. The replacements can be whatever brand you want, cheap or expensive, the important part is to keep the air flowing.
While you are at it, keeping the coils clean is also a good idea. And the drains. Dirt will always find its way to these places, and it is an especially good idea to take the time to brush it off if you know the AC will be on for an extended period of time.
On a less regular scale, you should also keep an eye on the duct work and the condenser unit kept outside. Cleaning the duct is probably not something you can do, but if you realize the problem early and get help, it won’t damage the air conditioner’s system. As for the condenser, it is a good idea to clean it with a hose every other month. Of course, always make sure the system is off before you do it.
The area around the AC is relevant too
It is important to keep the air flow going both inside and outside of the air conditioner. Basically, the area around it should be clear of any objects that prevent air circulations. An example can be any kind of plant growing near the unit: it should be kept at least two feet away.It is also important to keep an eye on debris that can accumulate over the unit or in its sides.
Check on the thermostat
Programming the thermostat is an important part of keeping your air conditioner working at top efficiency. First things first, if you’re AC doesn’t have a programmable thermostat, it would be a good idea to install one. This will allow you to control the temperature of your house throughout the day and throughout the season.
Another important aspect is to not set the thermostat to low temperatures in hopes of cooling the house quicker (the same applies to warming the house on winter). It doesn’t work that way. The unit is designed to change the temperature slowly but steadily, making the system more energy efficient.
Also: patience is a virtue.
Finally, it is extremely important to have a HVAC professional servicing your unit at least once a year, whether it shows problems or not. They will be able to clean the places you don’t reach, and overall make sure that your system is running efficiently. With their help, and keeping up the tips we just sheared, you can rest assured your air conditioner system will work flawlessly.