With summer approaching, it’s important to ensure your AC is in good shape so it can provide you with the cooling that you need. Here are some AC maintenance tips by OnTime Service to help you get started on tuning up your air conditioner for the new season!
1. Change Your Air Filter
One of the easiest but most effective ways you can ensure your air conditioner is well-maintained is by changing your air filter. It only takes a few minutes, but it can make a world of difference. An unclogged air filter can improve indoor air quality, prevent your AC from working overtime and reduce your AC’s energy consumption by 5 to 15%! Ideally you should be changing your air filter once or twice every month.
2. Check Your Thermostat
Make sure your thermostat is on the right setting to provide the cooling that you need. In addition to that, make sure it is set on “auto” instead of “fan”. The fan setting allows air to blow through your AC’s ducts even when your air conditioner is not going through a cycle.
Pro tip: According to the Department of Energy, you can save up to 10% on heating and cooling if you increase your thermostat setting by 7-10 degrees from its usual setting for 8 hours a day. If you want to start the new season off with some savings, try out this technique!
3. Inspect Your Outdoor Unit
The outdoor condenser is an important part of your HVAC system and requires proper maintenance just like any other AC component. Make sure there is no vegetation close to it—if you notice any dirt or foliage around it, be sure to trim it and maintain a clearance of at least 2 ft around the unit. In addition to that, clean the condenser thoroughly. Turn off your unit and remove any large pieces of debris or leaves by hand. Then wash off the exterior with a garden hose and some coil cleaner, without bending any of the fins and damaging the exterior.
4. Clean Your Vents and Registers
Dust build-up your vent grilles is inevitable. Take some time out every month to clean them up. Start off with using the brush attachment of your vacuum cleaner to remove any visible dust and dirt. Follow this up with a quick wipe down with a damp cloth to ensure no dust particles are left behind. An increasingly dusty vent grille can compromise your indoor air quality.
5. Seal Up Your Doors and Windows
Air leaks can increase your energy consumption and force your AC to work overtime to provide the cooling that you need. They can also worsen your indoor air quality. That’s why it’s important to ensure your doors and windows are properly sealed up, as they are the most common locations for air leaks. If you notice the weatherstripping around your doors and underneath your windows has worn out, be sure to replace it—you can easily find various weatherstripping materials at your nearest home improvement store.