5 Things to Check Before Using Your AC This Summer
With the average daily temperatures rising quickly in Maryland, it will not be long before the air conditioner is running full-tilt from early morning to late afternoon. Before you turn on your air conditioning system this summer, it is important to perform a bit of preventive maintenance to make sure it can run efficiently without damage or service calls.
Essential Pre-Summer Maintenance for Your Air Conditioner
Because your air conditioner sits dormant for a large portion of the year, there is plenty of time for dust to collect on the air filters, weeds to grow around the condenser, and corrosion to damage the condenser coil or refrigerant lines. That is why it is important to inspect your system and do a bit of maintenance, which can help to prevent system problems and damage.
Here are five easy steps that will help prepare your air conditioner for the summer:
Remove Debris From Around the Condenser
If the air cannot flow freely around the condenser unit outside your home and through the condenser coils, the air conditioner will not be able to remove heat from your home efficiently. This can lead to higher utility costs, poor cooling performance, a frozen evaporator, or even compressor problems. Remove all debris within a two-foot area around the condenser unit, and trim any grass, weeds, or brush that is growing too close to the sides of the unit.
Clean the Condenser Coils
Dust, dirt, insect carcasses, grass trimmings, and leaves can all collect in the condenser coils over the winter, plugging up the spaces between the fins and reducing the condenser’s ability to transfer heat significantly. To clean the coils, turn off the power to the system by pulling the disconnect, usually found inside an electrical panel on the exterior wall nearest the condenser. Gently spray the coils clean using a garden hose, being careful not to bend any of the delicate fins. Remove any debris from in and around the fan, then restore power.
Replace the Air Filter
Inside the home, locate the air filter housing near the evaporator or the return duct. Remove the air filter and incept it. If the air filter is dirty, and it is not a reusable model, install a new one. If the air filter is reusable, wash it according to the filter instructions, allow it to dry, and re-install it. A dirty filter can lead to poor air quality, reduced cooling performance, or even system damage, and it should be checked monthly.
Check the Refrigerant Levels
Starting an air conditioner with low refrigerant could lead to performance problems or even compressor damage. If you have had a problem with leaks previously, need the refrigerant charged periodically, or suspect there may be a leak due corrosion or damage in the coils or refrigerant lines, have the refrigerant checked by a professional before use.
Schedule Maintenance Services
Finally, the most important step is to schedule air conditioner maintenance with an HVAC contractor. Although DIY maintenance helps, it cannot replace professional maintenance services. Our experienced technicians at GAC Services will do a thorough inspection of your air conditioner and perform all routine maintenance to ensure it is fully prepared for the summer. Our services help to extend the life of your equipment, prevent breakdowns, and keep energy costs to a minimum.
Call Today for Air Conditioner Maintenance in Maryland
At GAC Services, we offer cost-effective air conditioner maintenance throughout Montgomery County, Howard County, and Frederick County, Maryland.
Call 301-926-3253 or contact us online to schedule maintenance today!