Studies have shown that air conditioner maintenance will extend equipment life. Air conditioner maintenance, when done properly, will keep equipment running efficiently and effective throughout its useful life.
There are some things you, the homeowner, can do. And, then there are other things that require a trained service professional. Both are important.
The Homeowner’s Role in A/C Maintenance
There are several things that you, as the homeowner, can do for yourself. Most important, remember that every air-conditioner unit has moving parts and high-voltage (240 V) electrical components that can be dangerous. Except for the panel specifically designated “filter access”, never remove any panels from your air conditioner equipment for any reason.
Change the Filter of Your Air Conditioner
The most important thing you can do to keep your air conditioner running efficiently and effectively is to change the filter. Keep a supply of good quality filters of the correct size, and evaluate their condition monthly, changing them as needed. The monthly check is a good idea because your air conditioner runs more at certain times of year than at others. During the height of the summer, monthly replacement might be necessary. In the cooler months, less frequently is usually the rule. But check monthly just to be certain.
Look and Listen to Your Air Conditioning System
This is an important part of air conditioner maintenance. You know better than anyone else the sights and sounds around your home. When you change your filters, take a moment to look at the grills (clean, no accumulation of dust), drains (flowing normally), and thermostat (properly set, no alerts or “low battery” signal). Note any unusual vibrations or noises and bring them to the attention of your service professional.
The weather in South Florida and in Jupiter can be extremely hot during the summer. The outdoor air conditioner unit has a big fan and moves a lot of air. So, to get some relief from the heat many pets (and other critters) will dig a cool resting place near the outdoor unit. There is little danger to the animal, but this should be discouraged as dirt and hair will get into the equipment.
Hedges should be trimmed back at least 12 inches from the outdoor unit. This allows the air conditioner to “breathe,” and prevents leaves and twigs from being drawn into the unit. Grass should not be allowed to grow up onto the concrete around the unit, and care should be taken when string-trimming that the air conditioner installation and wiring are not damaged. Fencing or hedges around the air conditioner should have an opening to allow for service and AC repair. There should be an area of concrete or gravel around the air conditioner so that lawnmowers and trimmers need not be brought near to it.
Appliances and Equipment
There are other home appliances and equipment that can do damage to the air conditioner. Or, they can interfere with its operation and reduce its efficiency. Areas around the air conditioner should be kept free of the effects of other equipment. For example:
- Water treatment systems use salt and chlorine (corrosive).
- Dryer vents expel fine particles of lint (will clog coils).
- Sprinklers use well water containing iron, tannin, and sulfur (discoloring and corrosive).
- Swimming pool equipment utilizes acids and chlorine (corrosive).
Get a Comfort Club Membership
You, as the homeowner, can provide a good environment for the air conditioner to operate in. The professional service technician then looks at the air conditioner in detail. Our Comfort Specialist has four things in mind:
- Performance, and
He or she brings years of experience and training in order to provide for the top quality evaluation and maintenance of your air conditioning system.
Our Comfort Club members receive a twice-annual inspection. Immediate repair recommendations are addressed first. Then the full system air conditioning maintenance inspection can begin. This includes
- Inspect and test all electrical and mechanical components,
- Check heat and cool mode operations,
- Measure refrigerant pressure and temperatures,
- Chemically clear and treat the primary condensate drain system,
- Clean and sanitize the indoor unit,
- Remove debris (accumulated leaves and dirt) from the outdoor unit,
- Wash and wax the outdoor unit,
- Check filtration and filters, and
- Inspect system for safety hazards,
You, the homeowner, play an important role in the work of effective year-round air conditioner maintenance. Your attention is very important and can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars over equipment lifetime. A little bit of housekeeping, care, and forethought on your part will preserve and extend the life of your air conditioner and will save you money.
For more information call Complete Comfort at (561) 531-5659, or check our website at www.mycompletecomfort.com. Our goal is that you will experience many years of comfortable enjoyment with your home air conditioner system. Air conditioner maintenance is a vital part of that process.