Everyone knows routine air conditioning maintenance is important. It’s a good way to give the family the best cool all summer and save money on energy bills. If the AC unit is maintained properly, it will use less energy and last longer.
The maintenance of AC unit requires proper training and even a license. If you have to call a professional help, of course you need to spend some money.
If you do all the maintenance by yourself, you save more money. However, you have to be comfortable with all the process of cleaning the appliance. Make sure you learn the steps carefully and keep a professional number to call when something goes wrong.
Right before applying the good tutorials you have searched on maintaining the AC unit you have to observe safety precautions such as shutting down the power at the electrical box. Wait one or two minutes. Confirm to all family members that you are going to work on the unit and they are not allowed to turn on the electricity until you get everything set up.
First, Clean the Air Filter
When the AC unit is fine and works well you don’t need to replace the air filter. Cleaning the filter is enough. Your AC unit may come with reusable filter. Do the cleaning process every month during high-use seasons.
The air filter is located behind the return air grille on a wall or ceiling. The filter can also be found inside the blower compartment of furnace or the air handler. On some types of AC unit you can find the filter in a slot on the side, bottom, or top of the furnace.
Clean the filter from dust, dirt, and allergen particles, so that the air flow produced by the unit will be stable and not decrease. By cleaning the filter the machine system works easier as well.
Second, Check the Components
After making sure that the electricity has been shut down, you can continue removing the access panel on the condensing unit and check if it has any signs of overheating. The signs of overheating include melted insulation on wires, blackened or burned-looking wires.
The electrical connections have to be tight. Use electrical test meter to see the capacitors inside. Check the contractor switch carefully. If you see excessive pitting, you should replace it.
If you find it difficult to replace the components by yourself, call an air conditioning expert. Do not work on it when you don’t feel comfortable.
Third, Check the Condenser Unit Fan
The fan is mounted on the top of the outside condenser. Make sure the fan is in good condition. If it has any cracks or chips visible on many of the fan blades, you should replace the fan with the new one. Check also the fan motor bearings. Apply some oil regularly to the motor.
Fourth, Clean the Unit
When you have checked all the components inside, the filter, and fan, next you need to make sure the outside unit is clean. Leaves, dirt, dust may build up on the outside of the AC unit. It will also decrease the capability of the machine.
Fifth, Give the Thermostat a Try
Check the thermostat to see whether or not it works properly. If you like it, you can upgrade the thermostat to a programmable model. This model allows you to set the temperature higher when no one is in the room. You can also set the unit to automatically cool down the room 30 minutes before people arriving home. You don’t need to turn off the unit, but you can save more money by not having your AC unit running all day.