Preparing for the summer is about more than getting the pool floaties out or heading to Garden World to get your garden ready. It’s about finding new ways to enjoy the weather while escaping the heat, but nothing beats an AC cooled room at the end of the day. However, what happens if you come home after a long day in the summer heat to find your air conditioner has broken down? The temperature in your home is rising and becoming extremely uncomfortable. A Pritchard & Fallin technician identifies the problem as low refrigerant, which could have been avoided with AC maintenance.
We are here to help when your air conditioner malfunctions or breaks down, but we never want our customers to feel uncomfortable in their homes. In this blog, we discuss the importance of AC maintenance and additional ways homeowners can prepare their air conditioners for summer.
Why Is AC Maintenance Important?
Similar to a doctor’s appointment or oil change for your car, your air conditioner needs to be seen by a professional to ensure it runs efficiently and effectively all summer long. AC maintenance is crucial for ensuring your unit starts when you prompt it to, providing clean, crisp air that keeps your household functioning. The summer season can present a large cooling workload for your air conditioner, and the smallest malfunctions or obstructions can result in costly repairs or breakdowns. A Pritchard & Fallin technician can thoroughly inspect each component of your AC system, perform preventative tasks, and provide repairs when needed.
These preventive maintenance tasks can provide peace of mind while also:
- Ensuring all parts are efficient so your unit pulls less energy from your utility grid, leading to lower utility bills and a smaller carbon footprint
- Catching minor issues and allows technicians to remedy them immediately before they become heftier, costly repairs
- Reducing breakdowns and premature deterioration that requires a replacement unit sooner
What Is Included in AC Maintenance?
During AC maintenance, our team conducts a series of checks. Preventative tasks can vary slightly depending on the AC unit type, model, and age, but we will perform the following inspections on each air conditioning system:
- Lubricate all moving parts
- Calibrate thermostat
- Clean inside and outside of the unit
- Check refrigerant levels
- Change air filters
- Tighten electrical connections
- Clean drain line
4 Ways To Prepare Your Unit for Use
While scheduling AC maintenance in Callao, VA and surrounding areas is the best way to prepare your air conditioner for summer, we also encourage homeowners to perform their own preventive maintenance tasks. If you take care of your air conditioner, it will take care of you in return. Below we have listed five tips to ensure your air conditioner will function properly this summer.
- Regularly Change Air Filters
- Clean Air Vents
- Remove Debris From Unit
- Maintain Thermostat
Change Air Filters
Air filters determine many aspects of a home, such as airflow, comfort, air quality, utility bills, and unit efficiency. If your air filter is dirty or clogged, it can harm all of the above factors about your home. Clogged filters cause air conditioners to work harder to push air through the filter pores, which increases the unit’s workload and can result in a breakdown or broken component. Additionally, the more energy used, the more it will reflect on your monthly bills. We recommend changing your air filter at least every 3 months or sooner depending on factors such as indoor animals.
Clean Air Vents
Debris and pollutant buildups also restrict airflow on the air vents around your home. As dirty air filters let pollutants such as dust slip by, the allergen can build up on your air vents. Cleaning air vents not only improves the aesthetics and cleanliness of your home, but also decreases airborne pollutants, allergy symptoms, and the workload on your air conditioner. Similar to a dirty air filter, your air conditioner must work harder to push air through dirty air vents.
To clean air vents, simply wipe down or remove the vent covers and clean them with soap and water. Before placing the vent covers back on, we recommend taking a vacuum and removing built up debris inside the air ducts. We encourage homeowners to add cleaning air vents to their weekly home to-do list to maintain an efficient air conditioner and good indoor air quality in Callao, VA and surrounding areas.
Remove Debris From Unit
Another way to maintain your air conditioner this summer is to regularly remove debris from the outdoor condensing unit. The outdoor unit contains copper or aluminum coils, a compressor, and a fan that stops working if clogged. Being exposed to all weather conditions can result in debris such as tree branches, leaves, grass clippings, and trash on and lodged inside the unit. While homeowners should leave cleaning inside the air conditioner to the professionals due to safety reasons, we encourage homeowners to remove accessible debris and trash weekly. This allows the air conditioner to breathe and function properly each time it turns on.
Your thermostat sends signals to your unit to power on when temperatures rise. It also manages the unit’s cooling output throughout each cycle, telling it what temperature to create for optimal controlled air and when to shut off after creating a uniform feel across your home. If your thermostat is unresponsive, it will either depict incorrect readings or refuse to power on.
First, check that you set your thermostat for the summer. Since summer and winter settings differ, some residents forget to alter them as the seasons change. Next, replace the batteries and check for a blown fuse or tripped breaker before calling a professional to inspect the wiring. But if you need a replacement thermostat, take this opportunity to upgrade to a programmable or smart one.
Trust Pritchard & Fallin To Take Care Of Your Air Conditioner!
For over 40 years, Pritchard & Fallin has upheld integrity, service, and excellence, always striving for new ways to introduce indoor comfort and improve air quality. Our always-evolving HVAC company separates us from our competitors, making us industry leaders since 1980 in Callao and Northumberland County. Trust us to get you through the next heat wave and keep your home at peak efficiency.
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