The overwhelming majority of the heating and cooling industry as well as most experts agree that the number one goal of an air conditioning system is to keep it working. Not everyone can afford an all-new system but if you own one that is at least 15 years old then your owner’s manual is probably your best bet for getting the most from it. It doesn’t matter whether you’re installing an all-new system or you’re replacing your current system. Aside from aircon cleaning, the following tips should help you maintain a system that works and keeps your home cool during the hottest months of the year.
Check the filter
It is important to change your filter regularly. Dirty filters allow more heat to get into the system, which causes a quick fan malfunction and a greater chance for a breakdown. Use the right size and type of filter.
Check for leaks
Before turning on the air conditioning, do a quick inspection of the unit to make sure there are no leaks or cracks. Leaks can allow moisture to infiltrate the system, leading to broken thermostats, power surges, and coils that may need to be replaced. Turn off the A/C If you notice your A/C isn’t cooling efficiently, shut the unit off. Keep the windows open, and be sure to keep vents clear so the system can circulate cool air properly. Maintain the unit Even if you never have problems with the air conditioning unit itself, it’s a good idea to have a professional check for any cracks or other problems. For more tips and tricks to stay cool this summer, visit ABC30.
Keep your filters clean
Most homeowners have window air conditioners, which have separate filters for the cold air. These filters are placed between the air-conditioning unit and the unit’s condenser coil. The need for these filters is especially critical during heat waves and for at least 60 days a year. Clean the filters on a regular basis. If they are dirty, they won’t deliver the cold air effectively. Strip your air conditioner of dust and debris Your air conditioner should be cleaned at least once a year. A good A/C professional can tell you how frequently to clean your air conditioner. A dirty air conditioner can become dangerously congested with dirt and other debris. Dirty air conditioners become difficult to manage, and in some cases can break down altogether.
Turn it off when you’re not home
An electric or electronic appliance will shut itself off when it’s not in use. If your AC unit does the same, simply change the breaker. Most modern AC systems are smart enough to stay within preset ranges, so you don’t have to worry about fumbling around with a broken wire. Take this an extra step: turn the A/C back on before you leave home each day. Once you return from work or an errand, turn it off again. The AC will continue to run, but without you in the home, it won’t waste energy. Turn it on only when you are home Heat doesn’t turn off. But you can turn off your AC only when you’re there. There are some windows and doors that let heat out, but not the cool air inside. Switch them back on, or open the curtains and blinds.
Clean your coils
Air conditioners run on a moving coil of wire, and if you leave your filter in place, dirt can build up over time and clog the machine. To keep your coils clean, pull the unit out of the attic and wash them in a sink filled with sudsy water. If you can’t wash them under the unit because of tight access or any other reason, clean them with a brush and air-conditioning wipes. Avoid putting the machine back in the attic until the coils are clean. And make sure the filters are changed every three months. Clean the hoses Air conditioners will cool down the air inside your home, but the air inside the HVAC unit itself needs to be clean.