Maintaining a regular maintenance schedule for your outdoor air conditioning unit is one of the most important things you can do if you want to extend its lifespan while also ensuring your family stays cool and comfortable all summer. The following tips will help ensure that your AC unit continues to run efficiently, saving you money over the long term.
Replace or Clean the Air Filter
Changing the air filter is probably one of the easiest tasks to complete — yet, you'd be surprised how many homeowners get lazy when it comes to this important task. The air filter is what keeps dirt and debris from getting into the unit itself, and when it becomes clogged, the whole system will run much less smoothly. You should change your air filter every month during times you are using the AC non-stop, like during the summer. If you want to save a bit of money, see if your unit will support a reuseable air filter that can simply be removed, cleaned, and then reinstalled.
Keep the Outside of the Unit Cleared
Depending on where your air conditioner unit is installed, this task could be relatively easy or might take a little more time. As days go by, the outside of the unit can accumulate things like dirt, leaves, or grass clippings, all of which can reduce air flow. If you notice a problem starting to develop, begin by shutting off power to the unit and then grab a garden hose. Gently wash the debris off of the unit, being careful not to spray water directly on the fins or other delicate parts.
Inspect and Replace Condenser Fan As Needed
While you have the unit powered off, one more area you should check is the condenser fan. This is the fan that you can see mounted on top of the unit. Take off the cover and look inside. Again, remove any debris that you see but more importantly, carefully inspect each blade for signs of wear and tear. If you see any significant cracks forming, it's likely time for a replacement fan to be installed.
Oftentimes the most difficult part of AC maintenance is simply remembering to do it. If you get into the habit of regularly changing the air filter and wiping down the outside of the unit, you will go a long way towards improving operating efficiency. Even if you can handle all of these tasks yourself, it still might be a good idea to bring in an AC repair specialist for a regular inspection. An annual maintenance check up by a professional will likely cost significantly less money than the repair bill you will receive if something goes wrong. For more information, contact a professional in your area or visit a website like http://www.capefearair.com.