Caring for Your Air Conditioner

The first day of summer seems like it’s a long way off, but with the way the weather is going in Annapolis this year, you’re going to need to fire up your air conditioner before June 20th rolls around—if you haven’t already! Unfortunately for your AC, this means extra work and extra strain on your system. Whether your central air conditioner is brand-spanking-new or seeing it’s last summer, there are plenty of things that you can do to extend the life of your AC and make it last a little longer so that you won’t be stuck searching for “air conditioner repair Annapolis” in the dog days of summer.

Some TLC for Your AC

Clear some space – The component of your AC that sits outside of the house is called the condenser. It’s what cools the liquid in your evaporator coils in order to keep your home comfortably cool. It’s important to keep the area around your condenser clear of leaves, grass, clippings, bushes and pretty much anything else in a two foot radius around your air conditioner. You don’t want anything blocking your condenser or getting into the unit. When you cut the grass, make sure that the clippings aren’t blowing inside of your AC, either!

A clean AC is a happy AC – We’re going to start by telling you that before you clean your air conditioner, you should read the service manual. All air conditioners are different and therefore need to be cleaned in different ways. However, just in case you “lost” your manual somewhere along the way, there are some general cleaning steps that everyone can take.

Most importantly, make sure that your air conditioner is off before you attempt to clean it! The majority of condensers can be hosed down by spraying from top to bottom. This will wash away any dirt that has made its way inside of your equipment. You can remove one of the side panels and clear out any remaining debris that may have been washed to the bottom of the unit with a broom or rake. Be careful if you endeavor to clean your own coils! Coils can be damaged very easily. If you want to clean them, try spraying them with water rather than taking a brush or cloth to them.

Consistency is key – Keeping the temperature consistent in your home is not only going to make life easier on your air conditioner, but save you money as well. Turning your AC on when you get warm and off once you cool down can burn out the interior switches and even damage your thermostat. On that note, we can’t emphasize the benefits of a programmable thermostat enough. You can set the temperature you want in your home and then let your air conditioner do the rest! You can even program the thermostat to automatically set the temperature a little higher when you know you’re going to be away or at work, saving you a bunch of money—up to 3% on your home’s cooling cost per degree!

Keep it cool – Keeping your condenser cool is going to make it easier for your air conditioner to keep the coils inside of it cooler. When your AC doesn’t have to work as hard, it’s saving you energy and money. If your condenser sits in the sun half the day, it would be a good idea to plant a nice shade tree nearby. If you plant a deciduous tree that loses its leaves in the winter, you can ensure that there’s shade in the summer and sunshine in the winter. This one action could save you as much as 10% on your cooling bill, not to mention how nice of an addition it will be to your yard!

Turn on the fan – Having ceiling fans in can make a big difference in the cooling of your home. When the fan is spinning counter-clockwise it will make a room cooler by blowing air downward. The cool breeze created by your fan should allow you to set your thermostat temperature a little bit higher, making the job of cooling your home easier on your air conditioner.

Speaking of fans, make sure that your AC fan is set to AUTO all the time. Your system is meant to cycle on and off and keeping it set to ON all the time can actually make your home warmer if it blows warm air into your home.

Check it out – It’s important to keep an eye on your air conditioner. You want to check your air filters monthly and replace them whenever they’re looking grimy because a dirty air filter can block airflow into your home. You’ll also want to look around for any gaps or leaks in your hoses and ducts. If air is escaping, you’ll be wasting your air conditioner’s energy and costing yourself money!

Keep it serviced – Sometimes checking your air conditioner on your own just isn’t enough and you’ll need one of our professionals at All Seasons Heating & Cooling to come out and check the nuts and bolts of your system. We can check to make sure that everything in your air conditioner is running smoothly by making sure that there is no energy being wasted, everything is running as it should be, checking your refrigerant and seeing if anything needs to be replaced.

If You Need Air Conditioner Repair in Annapolis

Unfortunately, there are going to be times when caring for and maintaining your AC aren’t going to be enough and your system is going to require repairs. When the time comes and you need an air conditioner repair in Annapolis, our service technicians at All Seasons Heating & Cooling can make sure that your AC is fixed promptly and expertly.

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