Honestly, how much are you ready to spend on your energy bills or AC services this summer?
Spring maintenance is much more than spraying your unit down with a hose. Much more. True, basic routine AC system maintenance can be performed by most homeowners. Whether you're changing your system's filter or just making sure that your unit isn't trying to devour dead leaves or whatever else might be creeping around your unit, you've probably got it covered. Yet, like a car or any other hard-working piece of equipment, your AC's got to have a little professional TLC at the beginning and end of each cooling season.
The summer months are quickly approaching and maintenance season will soon be coming to an end. If you still have yet to sacrifice a sunny Saturday poking around your outdoor unit, then we don't blame you. But, you definitely don't want to discover that there's something serious going on with your system when you actually depend upon your AC to keep you and your family comfortable when things heat up. Allow us to break down some of the simpler aspects of spring maintenance that can be performed by homeowners, and then we'll cover the services you'll need a pro to perform.
A Handy At-Home Maintenance Checklist for Homeowners
- Check and Replace Your Air Filters - We really, really hope you're doing this already. If not, you're really going to have a mess on your hands and your system is likely gasping (no pun intended) for air. This is especially true if you've got furry friends running around or live with allergy sufferers. If you fall into this category, we recommend changing your filter more frequently. For the rest of you, simply replace your filter according to dimensions and the manufacturer's instructions. You'll find a whole aisle of them at the home improvement store, ranging from cheaper ones that have to be replaced more often (and are generally less efficient) to ones that are more expensive but longer-lasting and generally of a higher quality. It's really a matter of personal preference and your home's needs. We have found that homeowners are more likely to replace their air filters on time if they always have a spare stashed away, so consider investing in multi-packs.
What's that smell? It might be whatever is trapped in that dirty filter.
- Maintain Your Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors - Let's face it; your detectors protect you from potentially life-threatening emergency situations. If you haven't done this in a while, stop what you're doing (after you finish reading, of course) and go pick up a pack of batteries. If you depend upon them to start beeping to signal that the batteries need changing - don't. If the batteries are that low, then they're obviously not functioning very well to begin with. Get in the habit of changing the batteries and testing the detectors now and again in the fall. If you don't have smoke or carbon monoxide detectors installed in your home, go back and re-read the first sentence of this paragraph.
- Clear Away the Junk - It can be a jungle out there, and your outdoor unit isn't a big fan (even though it is an actual big fan) of tall grass, yard clippings, weeds, or anything else blocking the airflow and making your unit work overtime. If the area around your unit is in need of a trim, you'll need to take care of this chore before the summer hits and keep it maintained while your AC is in use. If you attempted to hide an unsightly AC with bushes and shrubs, you're going to want to make sure that they aren't crowding the unit. From a professional perspective, you might want to remove them all together.
Why Call In The Professionals?
An air conditioner is a rather complex piece of machinery with all of its components, coolant, bells, and whistles. That's why each Reliant NATE-certified HVAC technician is properly trained to analyze and diagnose potential problems with your system and literally wears these qualifications on their sleeve. We're also an HVAC installation service Carrier Authorized Factory Dealer, which is no easy feat for an HVAC services provider. Only those expert heating and air conditioning dealers who meet the highest standards and closest scrutiny for their technical expertise and their business practices earn this distinction. The bottom line? We know what to look for, and we can save you a lot of cash and headache down the road when a preventable breakdown occurs.
We perform a 20-point inspection with each routine maintenance visit. We take care of the coils, fins, drains, and other critical components of your system, both inside and out. Proper maintenance can help your unit last decades. On the flip-side, a neglected air conditioner loses roughly 5% of its efficiency each year that it operates without upkeep.
Our spring maintenance AC systems checklist includes the following items:
- Thermostat settings ensure cooling and heating operations keep you comfortable when you're home and cut energy use when you're not.
- Electrical connections should be tightened. Voltages and currents on motors should be measured. Poorly maintained electrical connections cause unsafe operation of your system while reducing the life of all components.
- Lubricate moving parts. Friction causes additional resistance in motors and increases the amount of electricity used.
- Inspect the condensate drain in central heating and air units and heat pumps (for cooling modes). Plugged drains cause overflows and water damage, affecting indoor humidity levels.
- Functioning controls ensure safe and proper operation. We check that the system cycles run properly.
- Check the evaporator and condenser air coils. Dusty, dirty coils reduce a system's ability to cool your home. They cause the system to run longer, raising energy costs while stressing the life of the equipment.
- Check and adjust the refrigerant level of your central air conditioner. Too much or too little refrigerant is another symptom of a less efficient, energy-increasing, and life-reducing system.
- Clean and adjust blower component. This provides proper airflow for greater comfort. Airflow problems cause system reduction up to 15%.
Like to plan ahead? Protect your heating and air investment and save money on high-energy costs by joining the Reliant Air Conditioning Hero Club. Monthly payment plans are available starting at $13.75 per month for residential customers with one unit, and you can conveniently join the club and start your payment plan online by clicking HERE.
Ready to schedule your spring maintenance? Give us a click below!