With summer ending in Athol, now is an ideal time to get a head start on air conditioner maintenance.
If you haven’t washed it recently, it could be full of dust and debris from your yard. This accumulation can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to malfunction. Or make it wear out more quickly.
We advise having your air conditioning system professionally maintained once a year. Why? A clean unit can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on utility expenses.
Routine AC maintenance also helps our technicians spot and address small issues before they develop into expensive problems.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing
Some of the work we complete includes:
- Taking a look at the blower, motor, drain line and coils
- Watching pressure and temperature
- Reviewing lines, refrigerant amounts and connections
There’s still time to have a tune-up done this fall—and we can get your furnace ready for heating season too.
There’s also some work you can do alone between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to wash your outdoor condenser unit, as well as several components on your indoor HVAC system.
Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?
How to Clean Your Outside AC Unit
Pick a temperate day to clean your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is best. That way, you can test the unit once you’ve cleaned it.
You’ll only need a handful of items:
- 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
Five Steps to Clean the Outside Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Switch off the electricity to your air conditioner at the breaker box.
2. Clean the Outside
Take out debris from the system. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.
Then use the vacuum to cautiously clean the metallic fins. These parts are also known as condenser coils and transfer heat away from your system.
You need to be careful with these fine coils. Misshapen or crushed fins can affect efficiency.
3. Fix Bent Fins
Use a butter knife to straighten misshapen fins. You can also buy a fin comb from an appliance part retailer. A pro from Alpine Summit Heating & Cooling should handle large amounts of damage.
4. Clean the Inside
After extracting the fan, fish out leaves and other yard litter. Then wipe the inside of the equipment with a wet rag.
The only coil cleaner you should use is water. Use slight pressure from a hose nozzle to wash the fins, spraying water from the inside out. Replace 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 running properly, contact us a call at 208-561-1226.
Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later
Three Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Stop the power to your furnace at the breaker box.
2. Check Your Filter
Furnace filters need to be replaced every few months, depending on the model you use.
Can’t remember when you last checked yours? Pull it out and tilt it toward the light. If you can’t see light through it, replace it.
3. Clean the Inside
Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.
Then examine your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a pliable plastic tube. If it’s scummy, you can freshen it by draining diluted bleach through the tube to clean the line. Or you can replace the tube.
Clean the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Hook up the drain tube and restore power.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall
Never Forget a Tune-Up Again
Annual air conditioner maintenance from Alpine Summit Heating & Cooling can make your unit more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide handy service agreements, so you won’t forget to book your routine maintenance!