01 Feb AC Unit Maintenance Tips
Maintaining your home’s cooling system remains vital to the comfort and energy efficiency of your home. Located both inside and outside your home, these systems face normal wear and tear from regular usage and also potentially from weather damage. Simple upkeep, allows you to increase the lifespan of your HVAC systems and save on costly repairs.
When checking your outdoor air conditioning unit, make sure the top of the unit remains clear of objects restricting airflow. Blockages force the fan motor to work harder and reduces efficiency. Looking down into the unit, minimal debris is okay, but a buildup of dirt and leaves causes your unit to eventually fail. If you believe that the accumulation is affecting the performance of the AC unit, contact a heating and cooling expert for a professional cleaning.
Lined with coils that look like rows of fins, the side of your outdoor AC unit, overtime, becomes filled with leaves, grass clippings and dust. Using a soft, long bristle brush, gently run it along the fins to remove the buildup. This helps ensures proper airflow and increases efficiency. If it becomes apparent that you are unable to remove the debris, consider having it professionally cleaned. In cleaning the coils, you may notice bent fins. Using a thin, rounded piece up metal so as not to puncture the coils, gently bend these fins back into place. Additionally, purchasing an inexpensive tool called a fin straightener makes the task easier.
A refrigerant line — covered with an insulation lining that allows the flow of Freon gas — connects your AC unit to your home. Over time, this insulation becomes worn or falls away completely to expose the pipe. This insulation is an important part of your unit as it helps to reduce the heat exposure from the sun and should be replaced if needed. After checking the insulation, next inspect the pipe itself for corrosion, dents or wear. In you discover any serious damage, replace the line as soon as possible. A leak in the refrigerant line causes your unit to stop functioning.
If any time during cleaning you notice a refrigerant leak or severe damage to the line, contact a heating and cooling expert to repair the issue. Your AC unit consists of motors, electrical current and other moving parts, making repairs to it hazardous to those not trained in maintaining them.