Your heating system has been working overtime this past winter and now it’s time to get ready for warmer weather. Here are a few maintenance steps homeowners should take in the springtime to prepare their AC system for hot summer temperatures.
- Replace the air filter
A clogged air filter can reduce airflow and air quality, and force the A/C system to work harder. Be sure to replace the air filter at least once every three months to ensure the system is operating efficiently and keeping the indoor air clean.
- Check the condensate drain line
The A/C system removes humidity from the air and drains this condensation into a pan through tubing that leads outside via the condensate drain line. This drain line is typically located near the condenser unit. Once you locate it, inspect it to make sure liquid flows freely and is not blocked by vegetation.
- Clear the drain line
Over time, the drain line can become clogged with algae and other substances, causing the drain pan to overflow and potentially leading to water damage. Homeowners should regularly clear the drain line — typically during the springtime — using a wet-dry vacuum or with a vinegar solution.
- Clean the evaporator coil
Use a no-rinse evaporator coil cleaner or create a cleaning solution of dishwasher detergent and distilled water, and rinse with white vinegar. Cleaning the evaporator coil will help the system run more efficiently and smoothly.
- Check refrigerant levels
Improper levels of refrigerant can impair system performance. Typically, HVAC professionals take care of this during an A/C tune-up, since only licensed technicians can handle refrigerant.
- Tighten electrical connections
This step is necessary to prevent safety hazards and keep your family safe.
- Schedule a professional A/C inspection
The best time to schedule a professional A/C inspection is during the springtime, when the system is not being heavily used. In addition, home service providers are typically not as busy servicing HVAC emergencies.