Your air conditioner works hard to cool your home all summer long – especially in this heart-of-Texas heat. But, what have you done for your AC lately? You don’t get mad at your car when it runs out of gas, do you? No, you simply make sure to fill the tank so that issue doesn’t happen! You know that for all the things your vehicle does for you, you need to make sure it is fueled, given proper fluids, and checked up on regularly. Your air conditioner is no different! What can you do to help your AC do its job?
Smart Tips for Air Conditioner Maintenance
DIY: Change Your Filter Regularly
A dirty or clogged filter reduces the airflow to and from your central unit. This reduction in airflow can make it harder to achieve or maintain a desired temperature and lower your system’s efficiency. Also, it makes it more likely that the evaporator coil (the part that cools the air) will freeze and prevent your system from working correctly.
Hire a Pro: Clean Your Coils
Dirty coils mean your AC system has to work harder than it should. Clogged vents or ducts may prevent air from flowing properly. A professional cleaning at least once a year is an easy way to combat the struggle. We recommend an annual inspection of your AC and heating system.
DIY: Clear the area around your outside system.
Tall grass, weeds, bushes and other debris around the unit will decrease the airflow making your system work harder to get rid of the heat from your home. This kind of underbrush can also invite vermin to the area, who will flock to it and cause issues.
Hire a Pro: Fix leaky and disconnected ducts
Leaky or improperly installed ductwork can make your system blow cold air in spaces that don’t need it–”wasting” the cool air. It is possible that you are losing up to 30% of the air traveling through your ducts due to leaks. Having the duct work repaired may be the simple solution you need to keep things running smoothly.
Hire a Pro: Consider the Refrigerant
(R-22 = Freon refrigerant / R-410a = Puron refrigerant)
In many cases, an AC system that isn’t cooling properly may have low refrigerant… which may mean that you have a leak or that the system wasn’t charged properly when it was installed. Refrigerant is not a consumable that runs out. You may need to have the system repaired.
Beware of repair companies that say you need more refrigerant and don’t recommend a leak check. Refrigerant can be a pricey item that would be a waste to add to a system that has a leak. “Topping off” your refrigerant is a tactic that can be used by disreputable firms to pad a bill. We love giving 2nd opinions when customers feel something is off in the recommendations they are given.
Hire a Pro: Don’t Forget the Fan
When the blower is dirty or isn’t running properly, the cold air created by your AC won’t be spread through the house effectively. Also, hot air may not be removed properly. If broken, fixing or cleaning your blower should be a priority.
Hire a Pro: Be Kind to Your Compressor
The heart of the AC system is the compressor. It circulates the refrigerant between both your inside and outside unit. Replacing the compressor may be an expensive repair, but if your system simply isn’t working it may be the only solution. Taking care of your system by following recommended maintenance will keep your compressor working as long as possible and prevent you from having to deal with a sweaty summer.
Utilizing a scheduled maintenance program, like our Comfort Club program, may be the best solution to prevent a struggling AC situation. The team at McCullough Heating & Air would love to help keep your home cool and help you prevent major AC issues. Call us today to schedule a complete system check and maintenance for your AC unit.