Maintaining your air conditioner
This Healthy Home report is sponsored by Holland Heating and Cooling.
When the weather is hot and steamy, the last thing you want is for your air conditioning to go on the blink. Here are a few tips that you can do to ensure the least amount of trouble from your air conditioning unit.
- Inspect and clean the exterior fins of the unit. Make sure they are debris free. Air conditioning units draw in air through these fins to assisting in removing the heat extracted from the house. The dirtier they are, the harder the unit has to work. This can mean higher bills and a shorter lifespan. A plain water hose works just fine for this.
- Change or clean filter every month of use. Central air units use the same filtration system that the furnace uses in the winter. Window units have their own filter usually found right in the front of the unit. A plugged filter means decreased airflow and potential problems for your entire system.
- Keep plants, shrubs and trees at least 1 – 2 feet away from the unit. They can get sucked into the fins and coils restricting the airflow.
- Make sure your air conditioning unit is level. Central air that is tilted can cause problems with the fan blades and motor becoming unbalanced. For window units, a slight tilt downward at the back is great for draining the humidity removed from the home.
- Turn your air conditioning on before it gets too hot in your home. You won’t be saving any money by letting your house get 85 degrees before finally tuning on the a/c. The unit will work 3 times as hard and in many cases run for 4 hours straight and more just to try and get the house to the right temperature. This is a BIG money waster.
- Watch for freezing or frosted pipes within or attached to the a/c unit. This can be a sign of low refrigerant or improper airflow. Call a professional to prevent damage to your unit amounting to costly repairs.