If you’re like me, this is the time of year when you begin to notice windows that need a good washing or yards that need to be spruced up. All of a sudden you find yourself with a long list of spring cleaning tasks to do around the house. However, one item that might not make your top 10 list is maintenance on your air conditioning unit. Here are a few things to that you can do to help extend the life of your HVAC unit and to ensure that your air conditioner is ready for the hot months of summer.
- Turn on the air conditioner during these cooler months of spring. This is a great time of year to test out your unit to be sure it is working properly. If there are problems, then you have plenty of time to make repairs before the summer heat kicks into full swing.
- Replace your HVAC air filters on a regular basis. The frequency of these changes depends upon the type of air filters your HVAC unit employs. Some filters must be changed monthly, while others have a longer life. Households with pets may consider changing the air filter more often than suggested by the manufacturer. Clean air filters can aid with energy efficiency, as well as air quality and comfort.
- Clear the area around your HVAC unit of debris. Dust and leaves may have collected on the HVAC unit’s exterior over the winter. It is sometimes helpful to take a leaf blower and remove that debris so that your system can run at full capacity when needed. You should also make sure the HVAC unit’s drainage hole is clear.
- Maintaining your home’s ductwork is a good way to save on energy bills. Check for any holes in your ductwork that might be allowing cool air to escape to the outside. These holes need to be patched and the ductwork insulated, if possible.
- If you’re finding that your HVAC unit is not operating efficiently you might also consider installing a programmable thermostat. This allows you to program the unit so that the temperature in the house is higher while you are asleep or away from home, then cooler when you are spending more time in the house. There are Wi-Fi options available that allow homeowners to program their unit’s thermostat from their computer or mobile devices.
- Lastly, a routine maintenance check by a licensed HVAC service technician is always a good idea. Service technicians are trained to identify problems that the average homeowner might not notice. When caught early, repairs are often more affordable and can be performed with less disruption to the homeowner.
Spring is the time to tackle this checklist. When summer hits, you’ll be glad you did.