No matter how high quality of an AC you invested in, they all need to receive TLC from time to time. Otherwise, they won’t run as well. Not only does this drive up your energy bills, but it also strains the system, which results in a shorter lifespan.
So, the question becomes, how many times per year do you need to check out your AC? Yearly? Does it matter? Does it depend on the brand or style? At Aire Serv of Jackson, we’ve got the answers to that along with a full list of things to remember
How Often Does Air Conditioning Need Servicing?
There is no hard and fast rule about routine maintenance for air conditioners, but it’s wise to opt for twice a year.
In the fall, you’ll likely be hiring HVAC technicians to check out your heater so that it’s ready to keep the family warm throughout the cold months. When spring comes, it’s time to focus on any necessary tune-ups to get the AC ready to handle the heat and humidity.
But, in the meantime, there are things that you can do to help ensure that the parts are in good shape and that your system is running smoothly.
Should You Sign Up for a Maintenance Plan?
As you research professional AC services, you’re likely to find that many companies are offering some sort of maintenance plan you can become part of, where you’d pay a sum of money to receive priority and specialty services. Like with Aire Serv of Jackson, we have the Advantage Plan, which includes:
- Discounts on regular pricing
- Maintenance schedules for consistent tune-ups
- Preferred customer status with priority scheduling
- The option for automatic payments
- Cancelation at any time if you desire
- Account transfers to ensure service coverage from providers
- Yearly investment protection
- Priority status with other Neighborly® companies
If you’re persistent with care for your home appliances and systems, joining a plan like this eventually saves money on the costs associated. Regularly maintaining your AC leads to fewer breakdowns, repairs, or full-on replacements that are necessary.
DIY Air Conditioner Maintenance Tips
In between professional services, there are easy things to keep in mind to help your home stay comfortable, such as:
- Changing or cleaning the air filter
- Keeping the area around the unit debris-free
- Clearing and cleaning the condensate drain line
- Checking that the unit is level on the ground
- Visually inspecting electrical wiring
- Check the outdoor unit and clear it from any debris
- Testing out the air conditioning system
Clean or Replace the Filter
This is, first and foremost, the most important thing to stay on top of. If the filter clogs, your AC needs to work harder to achieve the same results. That means if you have a reusable filter, be sure to clean it every few months (or more if necessary) or replace it once it gets dirty.
Keep the Debris Away
The area around your outdoor unit should have a minimum of 2 feet cleared away from materials or vegetation that might block airflow.
Clear the Condensate Drain Line
With time, condensation gathers on the coil as it works to remove heat from the air in your home. The condensation drains into a condensate line to route away from the property, which means if there’s a blockage, it could cause a flood.
Make Sure the AC is Level
Your outdoor unit should have a level concrete slab underneath for support and stability. Similarly to things getting dirty, if the unit is not on level ground, it needs to work harder, which costs you more money and puts more strain on the system.
Inspect the Electrical Wiring
Loose connections or frayed wires are instant fire hazards. With that in mind, it’s crucial not to attempt repair or replacement unless you’re trained. But you can look at the wiring and controls to keep an eye out for any damage that needs attention.
Clean the Condenser
The outdoor unit is also known as the condenser, in which you can use a soft brush and vacuum to clean the coils before rinsing the exterior. This is a good time to also inspect the fins, or thin metal strips, on the exterior of the unit to see if any are bent.
Test the AC
After you’ve done all that you can to ensure that your air conditioning system is in good shape, it’s time for a test run. Turn the power on and let the unit run while you listen for any noises and watch for unusual activity. If you notice something is off, it’s time to bring in the pros.