7 Essential Steps to Effective Air Conditioner Maintenance (2019)

Your air conditioner is one of the most valuable assets in your home. Of course, you are going to protect and preserve such a valuable asset.

Unfortunately, many people ignore their air conditioner’s maintenance requirements. Then, they are shocked when the repair and replacement bills start rolling in.

The average cost to replace an air conditioner is roughly $5,000. However, more complex replacement jobs in more substantial homes can cost upwards to $12,500.

Read on for a comprehensive guide to air conditioner maintenance. Explore seven preventative maintenance tips to make sure your air conditioner is running smoothly.

1. Replace the Air Filter

Very few maintenance tasks are more manageable than replacing an air filter. However, many homeowners neglect this step.

Instead, they continue to run the air conditioner with a clogged air filter. This makes the AC unit run harder than it needs to and shortens its shelf life.

AC air filters need to be replaced every month. They are cheap and easy to install.

2. Clean the Air Compressor

Your AC unit’s compressor is located on the exterior of the home. Many people ignore this critical subsystem and allow it to operate unchecked in the elements.

You should periodically clean the air compressor. This consists of removing the fan cage and removing any foreign debris like leaves and pines.

Also, make sure to remove dirt on the compressor’s fins. This is accomplished with a brush attachment on a shop vacuum or a commercial cleaning spray. Once all the soil is loose, use a gentle stream from the garden hose to clean it thoroughly.

3. Compressor Maintenance

Several items can reduce your air compressor’s efficiency. For starters, inspect the compressor unit for bent fins as they reduce airflow. You can use a fin-straightening tool to fix it.

Also, periodically check on the compressor’s level. If the compressor is out-of-level, it can fail earlier than anticipated. For some, this maintenance task is too advanced and requires assistance from a professional.

4. Clean Air Conditioner Coils

Now, we are back to maintaining the primary AC unit. The purpose of the AC coils is to absorb heat.

When coils are covered in dirt and grime, they cannot effectively complete this objective. By absorbing less heat, the air conditioner has to work harder.

This results in higher than anticipated energy bills and shorter shelf life for the AC unit. Accessing coils is another task that may require professional assistance.

5. Make Sure the Condensate Drain Is Clear

This maintenance task requires periodic inspection to make sure the drain is not clogged. The condensate drain helps route condensation from the AC unit to the home’s exterior.

A clogged drain means the condensation is trapped within the system. If you are unable to unclog the drain yourself, it is time to call an HVAC professional.

A Recap of Air Conditioner Maintenance

Air conditioner maintenance is often overlooked, but it is important to your wallet and comfort. Taking steps like replacing an AC filter or cleaning coils go a long way to extending the unit’s service life.

If you need help performing air conditioner maintenance, please contact us to schedule an appointment today.