If you’ve been reading our blog for a while, then you probably know that we talk about maintenance quite a bit. This is because of how important an air conditioning service this is! Homeowners often still think of it as a “luxury” service that only people who can truly afford it get. However, maintenance is actually a necessity to keep your air conditioner running efficiently—you can’t afford to go without it.
Maintenance is what allows our technicians to spot small problems with your air conditioner before they grow into much larger problems, or even emergency breakdowns. But what actually happens during this service? What does an AC tune-up provide you with? Read on!
The Power of Professional Maintenance
Comprehensive maintenance, where your air conditioner is cleaned inside and out, closely inspected, and parts are adjusted if needed, should only ever be conducted by trained and experienced professionals. There are, however, a few small maintenance tasks that you cannot only do on your own, but you should do on your own.
For example, changing the HVAC air filter. Homeowners often believe that this air filter is in place to protect their indoor air quality. It certainly doesn’t hurt your indoor air quality, but this filter is actually in place to protect the HVAC systems themselves from dirt, dust, and other debris that can get inside and damage the components.
The other small maintenance task homeowners should do on their own is clean around the outdoor unit of their central air conditioner. We’re talking about checking for twigs, tree branches, lawn mulch, and other debris that might settle there throughout the winter season. These things can restrict airflow and force your air conditioner to run longer than it should have to in order to do its job, which is inefficient and will end up costing you.
Okay, so you know what you can do on your own and that the rest should be left to the pros. Now, what is it we actually do?
- We check the evaporator and condenser coils to makes sure they’re unobstructed, clean, and able to both release and absorb heat as they should.
- We check the refrigerant level and make sure it didn’t drop. A loss of refrigerant charge means that there is a leak and the leak must be located and repaired, otherwise compressor damage can occur.
- We check on all the electrical connections and tighten them where necessary.
- We clean the condensate pan and drain so that moisture from the evaporator coils doesn’t overflow from the pan.
- We clean and lubricate the fan and compressor motors to prevent mechanical stress that can otherwise lead to these motors burning out.
- We check that your thermostat is reading the temperature correctly, and we recalibrate the device if it’s not.
- We replace or clean the air filter if needed. Yes, we told you that you can do this on your own, but we won’t neglect it when we come out to do your maintenance.
All of these steps, including the ones you can do on your own, contribute to a more efficient and effective air conditioner, as well as an air conditioner that lasts as long as it’s meant to.