Spring is around the corner and there are several things you can do to prepare your AC for the hotter temperatures. It is also a great time to schedule maintenance or inspections with us to make sure your home or business is ready to meet the heat with no surprises.
Damaged Pipe Insulation
There is a large copper pipe that connects the outdoor unit to your building and it should be properly insulated. Look for a pipe with black insulation around it, this should be the suction line. You want it insulated so that your outdoor unit is able to cool properly and the insulation around it can be damaged by the elements. Humidity, pests and freezing temperatures can all degrade it and cause it to start to fall apart and it should be replaced if it has become damaged. After our last freezes occur, it is also a good time to look at and remove any condenser covers, coil blankets or lids.
Landscaping around the Outdoor Unit
You will want a minimum of 3-foot clearance around all sides of the outdoor unit. Bushes, vines, and trees may have grown into this area, or mulch may have collected. Now would be a good time to clear it all away to give the proper clearance for your system to function well. This is also something to be mindful of during the summer months, as cutting grass can create clippings that pile up and could cause your system to operate less efficiently.
Air Filter Changes
This is a common maintenance step that everyone does. Changing your filter before the spring and summer months allows the unit to work at it’s best. It will also keep contaminants from building up in the duct work.
Schedule a Duct Cleaning
Speaking of ductwork, it is normal for your system to have built up dirt and debris from the winter months. As part of the duct systems, clean your vents and grates. Look for a lot of dust floating around in your home or built up on the vents and grates. If you see signs of this, then schedule a time for us to come out and inspect the system. You may need to have your ductwork cleaned.
Clean the Condenser Coils
Grass clippings, mulch, debris, and trash can very easily build up on the condenser coils. You usually have to pull off the cover to see the coils, and as a regular part of maintenance, they should be cleaned. These grille-like sections of the outdoor unit handle all the heat transfer while the unit is running. They need to be free of anything that would cover the metal. A spray hose can be used to blow off anything that has accumulated over time.
Check the drain line
Another inspection and maintenance step can be to look for the drain. This is the pipe that usually drips water near the air conditioner. It drains condensation from the inside air handler to the outside and it should be free of blockage.
Turn it on and let it run for a moment
As the last step, try to turn it on and make sure it is able to run without any issues. Check for cool air coming out of the indoor vents, and then every few hours. Look out for no air coming out, or warm air only. This will let you get ahead of any problems and have us come out to get it fixed before peak heat season is here.