Tips for Starting Your A/C for Summer
Helpful Steps To Take Prior To Turning Your A/C On The First Time In Summer
After a long winter season of sitting dormant, your air conditioner will need a little TLC before it's ready to keep you cool all season long. An annual tune-up by a professional is recommended before the start of any cooling season, but there are a few simple steps you can perform all by yourself.
Mike Rowe: Hi, I’m Mike Rowe. The technicians at One Hour have put together a series of how-to videos perfectly designed for anyone ambitious enough to attempt to repair their own furnace or air conditioning system. I think they’re fantastic, however, if you want to make it simple, just call them directly. They’ll go virtually anywhere and they’ll be there in no time. That’s what I’d do. Sean’s on his way somewhere right now. Either way, good luck! Carry on, Sean.
Title: Helpful Steps to Take Prior to Turning Your A/C on the First Time This Summer
Ariano Robb: I love working on cars, but what I hate is going from a hot garage to a hot house with no air conditioning. Hi, I’m Ariano with One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating. The best part of what I do is ensuring my customers are comfortable all year long. Let’s get started.
Before performing any maintenance on your air conditioning system, make sure you shut off the power to your system at the main breaker and at the condenser disconnect box. An important safety note: it is recommended that you contact a professional to work on any part of the sealed central air conditioning system. Today we will be focusing on components of the system that are safe for you to work on. Be sure to wear personal protective equipment, including work gloves. You don’t want to expose your hands to wet or damp insulation, loose wire connections, mold or other growth. Eye protection is also recommended because dirt, dust or even paint chips may come loose.
Let’s start with inspecting the outside unit, called the condenser. This is one of the main components that makes up your central air conditioning system. It looks like a large metal box.
Follow these steps. Remove winter cover, if applicable. Visually inspect the condenser, making sure nothing is blocking air flow. Remove any leaves and other debris. Use a hose to clean the A/C condenser. Wipe the condenser down with a spray lubricant to add a layer of protection from the elements. Check that the refrigerant lines are well-insulated and show no signs of leakage.
Now, let’s move on to the inside unit, called the air handler. This is another component making up your central air conditioning system. It’s a perfect time to change out your air filter prior to the start of the summer season. Changing your air filter is easy, but there are a few key steps you don’t want to forget.
Visually inspect the area around your air handler and filter. Look for any signs of condensation, mold growth, dust or other foreign objects. Then remove the old filter and note the condition of the filter and its surroundings. Keep a trash bag handy; as soon as your old filter comes out, you want it to go straight into the trash. If everything looks good, slide your new filter in and make sure there are no gaps that would allow unfiltered air to pass through. A good tip is to write yourself a note with the date of change. You can put this on a piece of tape, and if you have a spare filter available, write it on the next filter.
Now it’s time to test your air conditioner. Make sure to turn the power back on. Go to your thermostat and switch it to cool. Set the temperature to 68 degrees Fahrenheit or to a temperature lower than the current reading. Make sure you open room vents you may have closed for winter. Once the system kicks on, check vents for cool air flow. Listen to the air handler, making note of any abnormal sounds.
Go outside to verify the condenser fan is spinning. Listen to the condenser and make note of any abnormal sounds. If everything checks out, make sure you go back to the thermostat and adjust to your desired temperature.
The changing season is also a great time to schedule professional maintenance on your entire home air system. A total maintenance inspection will ensure your entire home system is running properly and smoothly all summer long. Identifying early signs of trouble before they cause a big problem will go a long way in preventing breakdowns and keeping you and your family in your comfort zone.
Want additional help keeping your HVAC system in tip-top shape? Call the professionals at One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating.