End of Summer Home AC Tips
As summer winds down, here are some tips to maintaining and inspecting your AC system until next season.
As much as we don't want to see it go, the hot temperatures of summer are leaving, only to be replaced by cooler air as fall and winter set in. At this time, it's wise to give your air conditioning system a full inspection before shutting it down till next year. This will not only ensure you don't have any problems next summer, but it will also keep it running efficiently for many more years to come. A full AC check will also alert you to any developing issues with your AC system so you can get them fixed now before they become bigger problems.
Check Refrigerant Levels
Your AC system has been working overtime all summer long. That's why it's crucial to make sure your refrigerant levels are good, and top them off if they're not. Refrigerant keeps your indoor environment cool and comfortable, so you don't want to neglect this task. If you've been doing your job right throughout the summer and keeping an eye on the levels, you know what a normal level should look like at season's end.
Replace or Clean Air Filters
If you have an AC that features reusable filters, now's the time to clean them in warm soapy water. If your AC has replacement filters, grab one from your stockpile (it's always good to think ahead and keep a bunch on hand!) and install it, throwing out the used one. If you neglect these chores, you're putting your family's health at risk due to a low quality of air in the home. Not only that, but you're making your AC unit work much harder than it has to in order to get air through particle-filled filters. According to Energy.gov, clogged, dirty filters block normal airflow and slash your system's efficiency, as air that's carrying dirt can get into the evaporator coil and prevent the coil from absorbing heat. In fact, just by replacing a dirty filter with a clean one, you can lower your air conditioner's energy consumption by between five and 15 percent.
Run Some Cycles
You may not give your unit cycles much thought as you're enjoying your AC all summer. However, don't switch off to heating mode until you allow your unit to run through several cycles. Keep an ear out for:
- How long it runs
- Any strange noises
- Any inconsistencies (one cycle goes long yet another one is short)
Clean Out the Drains
Pooling water around the unit isn't the only sign of a clogged drain, which is why you should check and clear your drains anyway. Drain your AC condensate drain tubes once a year and don't neglect cleaning out the coils as well.
Benefits to End of Season Maintenance
There are many reasons why you should have a professional conduct end-of-season inspection on your AC. This will help you:
- Save money on your utility bills
- Prevent costly repairs
- Extend the operating life of your system
- Save time now compared with problems that crop up in the heat of next summer when you turn it on
If you need help with the above tasks, contact the professionals at TDI Air Conditioning for help! Our qualified, trained technicians can go through a checklist of tasks to ensure your AC is shut down properly for the winter.