After sitting idle during the winter, your air conditioning system needs maintenance and care before starting up on the first hot day of the summer. Without proper AC maintenance, you could face an expensive air conditioner repair or replacement. Here are some simple tasks you can perform to prepare your AC for summer.
Air Conditioning 101
First, it’s important to know how your home’s air conditioning system works. There are two parts to a standard residential air conditioner: the outdoor condenser and the indoor evaporator. The two units work together to remove heat and humidity from the air and circulate the cooled air throughout your home. The same goes for ductless mini-split AC units.
Clean The Condenser
Over the winter, the condenser has been sitting idle outside, under dirty snow and getting filled with leaves, dirt and debris. So, you’ll need to clean it before turning it on for the first time. However, before cleaning, you must turn off the power to the unit. Besides the breakers inside the house, the condenser should also have its own 240-volt breaker in a weather-sealed box that you’ll have to flip.
Inside the condenser will be a fan that runs over a series of condenser coils. If these get clogged with leaves, debris and dirt, they won’t function very well. To clean the coils, you must remove the metal housing that sits over the top of the coils. Use a vacuum with a soft brush and clean the condenser coils on the outside and inside. Avoid bending the metal fins between the coils.
Then, clean the fan blades and scoop leaves and debris out from inside the condenser. Ensure the drain is clear. Put a few drops of lightweight oil into the oil ports and replace the metal housing. Cut away any branches, weeds or vines that may interfere with the condenser’s airflow.
Replace the Filters
If your AC unit is connected to your furnace blower, you’ll need to ensure the air filters are clean. Remove the filters and replace them if needed. You should replace your air filter every 90 days. Time your filter replacements with the season changes.
Schedule a Professional Maintenance Tune-Up
Your air conditioner should undergo a professional tune-up, including AC maintenance and cleaning, at least once a year. A technician can spot and repair minor issues before they become big problems and will ensure your AC unit runs smoothly all summer long.
Air Conditioner Repair, Installation and Replacement Services in the GTA
At Black Forest Plumbing, we provide complete air conditioner repair, installation and replacement services. We also offer annual AC maintenance to home and business owners in Newmarket, Aurora, Barrie and the GTA. Contact us today to book an appointment.