It’s time to wake up your AC from its winter hibernation and get it ready for the hot summer ahead. Like other appliances, your AC requires start-up maintenance in order to run properly. After all, it has been idle for months. Before you turn on your AC, we recommend performing a few cleaning and maintenance tasks to ensure optimal operation of your system:
1. Remove winter covers.
Begin by removing any winterizing blankets or protective lids that you have on your unit. Turning your AC on while the covers are still in place can cause damage to the condenser and could result in costly repairs or replacements.
2. Inspect the outside panels.
Check the panels that encase the electrical components for signs of damage. If you don’t use a winterizing cover, pay close attention to surface wear and tear. If a panel has been compromised or is missing, contact us so we can further inspect for signs of internal damage.
3. Clean ground debris.
Clear dirt and other yard debris from underneath and around the base of the condenser. Trim garden foliage to allow plenty of open space around your unit. When your AC is blocked, it runs harder and hotter, causing higher energy usage and accelerating the wear and tear on parts.
Pro Tip: Clear yard clippings and other debris from your unit at least once a month throughout the summer and early fall.
4. Check for damaged insulation.
Refrigerant pipes are covered with foam insulation to prevent them from losing energy and to ensure your unit’s cooling capacity is being maintained. If you notice the insulation is frayed or missing, contact us so that we can replace it with new foam insulation covering.
5. Replace the filter.
After you finish up outside, take a look at your inside unit. Start by changing out the air filter to make sure it's not recirculating any particulates back into your home. Dust and debris that’s built up on your filter restricts airflow and will make your AC work harder to cool your home. This is especially important if you have pets that shed.
6. Look for clogs.
Next, visibly check the condensate line for any blockages. The condensate line carries excess condensation from the coil drain to a discharge outlet, such as an appliance drain, a cellar pit or outside your home. A block in the line can cause water damage and lead to mold, mildew, and algae, so be sure the escape route is free and clear of debris. Contact us if you have any concerns regarding the condensate pump.
7. Clean vents and air intakes.
Start by opening your supply vents in each room. Closed vents create unnecessary pressure on the ducts, leading to air leaks and causing the air handler to work harder. Clean vents with a vacuum to remove dust, pet hair, or other debris, and watch for potential obstructions like curtains and rugs.
8. Test your AC.
Turn your thermostat to OFF. Then turn on the power at both the disconnect box and at the main panel. Then switch the thermostat to COOL. Confirm there is cool air flowing through the vents. If your AC unit isn’t running properly, contact us and we’ll come take a look..
9. Check with the pros.
There are many parts and processes of your AC system that can go unnoticed by an untrained eye. Annual maintenance by a professional helps you keep tabs on your system from year-to-year. During a check-up, your Main Stream Mechanical technician will inspect your unit from top to bottom and provide a detailed assessment of the functionality and efficiency of your system.
HVAC Installation, Service, and Repair
Regular cleaning and maintenance tasks help maintain the performance of your AC system between your annual service visits. Be sure your system is ready to deliver the cooling comfort your family wants this summer. Schedule your maintenance appointment with our home comfort specialists today!
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