With summer winding down in New Castle, now is a good time to get a head start on air conditioner maintenance.
If you haven’t taken care of it this year, it could be full of mud and yard refuse. This collection can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to break down. Or make it wear out more quickly.
We suggest having your air conditioning system professionally serviced every year. Why? Clean equipment can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on utility bills.
Regular AC maintenance also helps our technicians discover and take care of slight issues before they develop into high-priced problems.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing
Some of the work we perform includes:
- Viewing the blower, motor, drain line and coils
- Confirming pressure and temperature
- Examining lines, refrigerant totals and connections
It’s not too late to have a tune-up done this fall—and we can get your furnace ready for heating season too.
There’s also some upkeep you can do on your own between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to wash your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a few parts on your indoor HVAC system.
Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?
How to Clean Your Outside AC Unit
Select a warm day to scrub your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is great. That way, you can run your system once you’ve cleaned it.
You’ll only need a handful of tools:
- Wet-dry vacuum and hose with a soft brush attachment
- Butter knife
- Damp rag
- Small, round paintbrush
- Replacement furnace filter (if necessary)
Related: How AC Repair and Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money
Five Steps to Clean the Outside Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Cut the electricity to your air conditioner at the breaker box.
2. Clean the Outside
Remove debris from the equipment. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.
Then run the vacuum to gently clean the metallic fins. These parts are also called condenser coils and transfer heat away from your unit.
You need to be cautious with these delicate coils. Bent or crinkled fins can impact efficiency.
3. Fix Bent Fins
Use a butter knife to straighten warped fins. You can also buy a fin comb from an appliance part store. A pro from Central Heating & Plumbing should handle extensive damage.
4. Clean the Inside
After removing the fan, pull out leaves and other yard litter. Then clean the inside of the unit with a wet sponge.
The only coil cleaner you have to have is water. Use gentle pressure from a hose nozzle to clean the fins, showering water from the inside out. Replace the fan once you’re completed.
5. Test Your Air Conditioner
You can now restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not running correctly, contact us a call at 724-401-1843.
Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later
Three Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Turn off the power to your furnace at the breaker box.
2. Check Your Filter
Furnace filters need to be exchanged every couple of months, depending on the kind you use.
Not sure when you last checked yours? Remove it and tilt it toward the light. If light isn’t visible, get a new one.
3. Clean the Inside
Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.
Then inspect your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a pliable plastic tube. If it’s dirty, you can clean it by draining diluted bleach through the tube to clean the line. Or you can get a new tube.
Scrub the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Hook up the drain tube and switch the power back on.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall
Never Forget a Tune-Up Again
Annual air conditioner maintenance from Central Heating & Plumbing can make your equipment more efficient and help it last longer. We also have practical service agreements, so you won’t forget to schedule your routine tune-up!