Replacing an air conditioner is not cheap, so of course you want to keep yours running for as long as possible. Luckily, this does not have to take hours of your time. By completing these six simple tasks, you can keep your AC system running smoothly for years to come.
Turn the power off when you're not using it.
When the air conditioning season is over, turn the power off to your AC unit. You can either do this by utilizing the switch on the AC itself (which is usually found on the side of the unit near the bottom), or by turning the power off at the circuit breaker.
Keep weeds trimmed.
Don't let weeds grow near your outdoor AC unit. Keep them trimmed regularly, and also cut back any bushes or shrubs near the AC unit. These items can not only become trapped in the AC unit, but they can also impede airflow and force the system to work harder.
Straighten the fins.
Those little pieces of aluminum on the outside of your AC condenser are known as fins. They can get bent over time, and when they are bent, the AC system has to utilize extra energy to operate. You can purchase a little tool called a fin straightener, which looks like a little comb, and use it every few months to straighten the fins back out.
Change the filter.
The air filter for your AC unit is probably found indoors near the main air duct. Set a reminder in your phone so you remember to change it once a month. Otherwise, your filter may get too dirty, which will cause dirt to build up on your AC condenser, reducing its efficiency. You don't need an expensive filter -- the $1 or $2 kind will work just fine as long as there's nobody in the home with environmental allergies.
Keep the drain clear.
A few times a year, look at the drain where the condensate collects. Make sure it is clear, and if you see any debris inside it, clear it away. This will keep water from pooling near your AC unit, which could cause an electrical short.
Clean the coils.
About once a year, apply a coil cleaning solution to both your indoor and outdoor coils. Let the cleaner sit and drip down for about and hour, and then wipe off the excess. This will keep everything clean and running efficiently.
For more information on air conditioning maintenance, contact a company like Air Cool AC Inc.