Complete These Maintenance Tasks Before Turning On Your Air Conditioner

Posted on: 6 May 2015

Summer is coming, and that means air conditioner season is not far away. Before you turn on your air conditioner this season, be sure to complete these simple maintenance tasks.

Have your ducts cleaned.

Spring is the perfect time to have your ducts cleaned. The dust and mold spores have had time to settle in the ducts since your heat has likely been off for a while. This ensures that as much dirt as possible will be removed from the system.  Don't wait until after your air conditioner has been turned on to do this, or all of the dirt and dust will already have been blown out and into your home. Also, HVAC companies tend to be less busy in the springtime since they are not running around doing last-minute, emergency furnace repairs. You should have an easy time making an appointment.

If you don't have time or cannot afford to have your ducts professionally cleaned, at least vacuum out the air returns and the faces of your air vents. This will remove some dust – which is better than nothing.

Replace the filter.

In central air conditioning units, the filters are usually found in the space between the return air duct and the air conditioning unit. Remove the old filter, and take it with you to the store to make sure you purchase the right variety. Replacing the filter now will ensure that as soon as you start up the system, any mold spores or pollen in your system gets trapped by the filter – not shuffled through your home. A new filter also increases the efficiency of your heating system, allowing you to save on air conditioning costs.

Hose off your condenser unit.

Condenser units can get pretty dirty in the winter. Caked-on dirt and salt residue, and particles of leaves can reduce the condenser's ability to absorb heat from your home's air, which is ultimately its function. Cleaning a condenser unit by yourself is not hard. Turn off the power to the condenser first, so you don't accidentally shock yourself. Then, use a screw driver to remove the outer panels.

Brush surface dirt off of the internal coils, and then use a biodegradable foam cleaner to spray the coils. Make sure you cover the motor components of the air conditioner with plastic before spraying. Rinse off the coils, let the unit dry, and then put the outer panels back on.

If you're not comfortable tackling these steps alone, contact an HVAC specialist to clean your condenser for you. If you have your ducts cleaned, too, they can likely complete both tasks on the same day.

For more information, contact Shideler Electric, Heating & Cooling or a similar company.