The summer season is almost here, but are you prepared for it? It’s that time of the year again when you constantly check your phone for weather updates only to find that the temperature is similar to that of your oven. This is where your air conditioning unit (AC) comes to the rescue.
For most households, AC plays a significant role in their day-to-day living to ensure comfort during the long, hot summer season. However, is your system ready to work harder like a marathon runner? Can it keep up with your cooling needs?
Regular tune-ups and maintenance are required if you want your AC to run efficiently and effectively this summertime or springtime. With this, you’ll be able to prolong its life span, prevent unwanted system breakdowns, and reduce your cooling bills. But the question is how?
Everyone talks about the importance of regular tune-ups, but no one mentions how it’s done properly. To fix this, here are the elements you might need to include in your AC tune up checklist. These will help ensure a healthy and functional AC system.
1. Outdoor Refrigerant Lines
Checking the outdoor refrigerant lines is the first thing you must do during tune-ups. Observe if there are any signs of physical damage. It will start leaking if it’s damaged, and if that’s the case, you won’t be able to run your AC until a professional heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) service provider fixes it. Once it’s fixed, ensure to keep it safe from potential causes of damage, such as small stones ricocheting while clearing your lawn.
2. Insulation Of The Refrigerant Lines
After checking your outdoor refrigerant lines, observe the insulation. If they’re not insulated well, water will condense and start leaking. It may not be a severe issue on the outside, yet that may not be true inside your home. This causes mold growth, which severely affects air quality indoors.
3. Indoor Unit Coil
The indoor coil is one of the most critical AC parts to check during tune-ups. Make sure it’s always clean and free from debris. This is because dirt may pass through your unit’s filter, making your AC less efficient. It’s also most likely to happen if you fail to change your unit’s filter regularly.
4. Outdoor Coil Unit
After inspecting the indoor coil unit, the next is to observe its outdoor counterpart. You want to ensure there’s no dirt or debris on the coil. If you have dogs that play outside your home, you’ll need to check if there are signs of dog urine around the coils. This leads to damage that is often irreparable.
5. AC Filter
Filters are crucial to ensure healthy air for you and your family. That said, ensure you’re using the right one for your unit and regularly cleaning it. Besides, most experts recommend replacing AC filters every 45 days for maximum efficiency. In most cases, you can have them replaced at least two to three months.
6. Indoor Blower Motors
Examine your AC’s blower to find out if there is dirt that can render fans less efficient. Without fans, air won’t properly circulate across your home. In addition, a dirty filter is responsible for all the dirt and debris on your blower fans. This causes the blower motors to burn out.
7. Overflow Safety Switch
The overflow safety switch is located in the indoor unit. Its primary role is to shut down your unit if the water doesn’t flow properly or the condensation line is connected. If it’s damaged, faulty, or missing from the system, there could be possible leakages in your AC. If the issue is not addressed as early as possible, your floor, ceiling, and everything surrounding it will get damaged.
8. Motor Capacitor
Capacitors are one of the most critical parts of a fully functional AC system. Each unit typically has three capacitors in its system. If one of them is damaged or faulty, the functioning of the entire unit will be compromised. If that’s the case, call your local HVAC service provider to have them replaced right away.
9. Indoor Furnace Leaks
Check if the furnace of the indoor unit is sealed properly. With this, you can prevent excessive leakages from the air handler, which may compromise your system’s operation and efficiency. Moreover, a leaking furnace will force the system to work harder, leading to an overheated AC unit.
10. Disconnect Box
Also known as a disconnect switch and isolator, a disconnect box is responsible for cutting the electricity to your unit. You want to ensure that there are no burnt wires because of mishandling. In addition, ensure that all connections are tight and no wires (not a single one) should be left hanging. Likewise, the isolator should be sealed with silicone to comply with the HVAC code for safety purposes.
A thermostat is one of the vital parts of an AC unit. Without it, there’s no way for you to control the temperature of your system, even if it’s 100% fully functional. It’s like watching TV without a remote, which can be frustrating. Therefore, ensure all wires are connected properly and that it doesn’t need a new set of batteries. Furthermore, make sure to have it calibrated regularly to ensure that the temperature control of your AC is always correct.
12. AC’s Refrigerant Levels
Refrigerant levels are always present in AC tune-ups. As you know, a refrigerant is responsible for the cooling process. Without it, cool air wouldn’t be possible. To check them, you may use a digital gauge instead of an analog gauge for a more accurate result. You want to make sure that it’s at the correct levels—not too high and not too low.
Regular AC tune-ups are necessary for a fully functional system. This will help prolong your AC’s life span and prevent mishaps like overheating and sudden breakdowns. It will also help you ensure that your system will work perfectly during the intense summer season. You may use the essential elements of the checklist discussed here for better results. Or better yet, call your nearest HVAC providers for maintenance checkups and to address potential problems you don’t know.
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