Air Conditioner Maintenance
Just like your car requires regular maintenance for it to run, so does your air conditioner require service for it to run smoothly. In fact, having your A/C unit inspected at least once a year will help you get the most out of your system. The best time for your yearly air conditioner inspection is right before the heat of summer rolls around. This way you can prepare your system and also avoid a mid-summer system breakdown. Having your air conditioner serviced regularly will also keep it running efficiently and save you on energy costs.
When choosing the right contractor for your yearly air conditioning service, be sure to ask about what’s included in the inspection. Here’s a checklist of what should be included.
Standard Air Conditioner Maintenance Checklist:
- Verify the thermostat is working properly.
- Check air filter. If it’s dirty, then it needs to be replaced.
- Check and clean evaporator coil.
- Clean the condensate drain by clearing out algae and flushing out the unit.
- Make sure blower motor is clear and bearings are working well.
- Check and clean condenser coil.
- Check refrigerant pressure and level, making sure there are no refrigerant leaks.
- Inspect the compressor’s amperage.
- Inspect and tighten electrical connections, making sure there are no signs of overheating or chaffed wiring.
- Measure air temperature difference.
- Inspect the ductwork and look for possible loss of energy.
Typical Air Conditioning Maintenance Cost
The cost of a standard maintenance service visit should be around $70 to $100 if there is no need to repair or replace any parts. A typical service agreement–which usually includes two service visits per year–might cost about $140 to $200 per year. Whether you opt for a service agreement or not, regularly maintaining your system is one investment definitely worth the money, as it avoids costly repairs that can be prevented.
What You Can Do to Maintain Your Central Air Conditioner
Besides having your A/C technician inspect your air conditioner once a year, you can also do your part in properly maintaining your system. You can start by keeping your outside unit clear of bushes or any growing plants that are near it. A 12” to 15” distance between your unit and plants is sufficient to allow for free air flow. You can also regularly hose down your outside unit making sure it is free of any debris that gets stuck in the small fins. Be sure not to use a pressure sprayer, however, as this can potentially damage the condenser’s delicate fins. During the winter months, you can also protect your outside unit by covering it. This will protect it from the harsh winter elements. But be sure not to completely seal it, as this will prevent any moisture from evaporating. Also, don’t forget to uncover it when you plan on using your A/C again in spring. And the most important thing you can do to make sure your air conditioner is running at its maximum efficiency level is replace the air filter(s) in the inside unit. Having clean air filters is especially important for the quality of your indoor air, since these are what ultimately clean the air you are breathing.
To find a qualified contractor to service your system, search our listings, or call us at 1-866-97-ACPRO.