Your air conditioner is one of the most important appliances in your home. It is important that you take proper care of your air conditioner unit. Proper maintenance helps extend your unit’s service life and reduces the chances of it breaking down. While you will need HVAC services in Stockbridge for certain maintenance procedures, there are a few things you can do to keep your air conditioner in top condition.
Keep the Surrounding Area Clear and Leveled
Objects that are too close to your air conditioner can cause damage or reduce efficiency. Once the fan cage is replaced, rake away any leaves or debris surrounding the condenser. Be sure to cut down any branches or vegetation that is within two feet of your unit to prevent any obstructions to air flow. When the condenser is not being used, it is recommended to cover the top of the unit with plywood or plastic to prevent debris from falling in. Never cover the entire unit, or you could risk corrosion due to interior moisture and encourage infestation. In addition, an uneven air conditioner increases the chance of your compressor failing. Use rot-resistant shims to re-level your air conditioner.
Cleaning the Exterior
Before you begin, make sure to shut off the power to your unit. Then remove the fan cage from the exterior condenser. Use a screwdriver to remove the fasteners so you can lift the fan grill from the unit. Use a wet/dry vacuum to remove any leaves or debris. Use a strong garden hose to remove debris from the fins. For additional cleaning, purchase specialized fin cleaning spray to remove any stubborn dirt stains. If any fins are bent, you can use a butter knife or fin straightening tool to prevent any reduction in air flow efficiency. Air conditioner filters should be changed and replaced twice a year. This should be done just before heating and cooling seasons begin. Take care that your new filters have the same air flow rates because changes to air flow can damage the interior. Once you locate the filter inside your unit, unscrew the latch door so you can remove and replace the filters. Make sure that the filter is positioned properly before closing and latching the door.
Cleaning of the Interior
When ready to clean the interior of your air conditioner, locate the evaporator coil door. You might need to remove duct tape, screws, and bolts to open it. Once inside, use a soft brush and no-rinse coil cleaner to clean it. Coil cleaner can foam up and drip into the drain pan. Make sure to drain this pan with soap, hot water, and some bleach. Pour a cup of water and bleach down the drain pan and add a certified drain pan tablet to prevent algae growth. If you drain is clean, you can then replace the evaporator coil door and seal it with duct tape. If the drain pan is still clogged, you will need to clear it. Clogged drains can cause flooding around the floor of your air conditioner or cause the air conditioner’s cooling system to shut down. Locate the drain line coming from the evaporator coil, or PVC pipe. Once you find the end of the pipeline, use a wet/dry vacuum to clear the drain. Use duct tape or hold a rag tightly around the opening while doing so for 2 to 3 minutes.