With summer winding down in Chelan and Wenatchee, now is an ideal time to get ahead on air conditioner maintenance.
If you haven’t taken care of it recently, it could be blocked with mud and yard waste. This buildup can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to break down. Or make it wear out faster.
We suggest having your air conditioning system professionally tuned-up annually. Why? Clean equipment can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on utility bills.
Routine AC maintenance also helps our technicians discover and address minor issues before they turn into high-priced problems.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing
Some of the work we perform involves:
- Viewing the blower, motor, drain line and coils
- Watching pressure and temperature
- Reviewing lines, refrigerant amounts and connections
It’s not too late to have a tune-up done this fall—and we can get your furnace prepared for heating season too.
There’s also some work you can do alone between professional tune-ups. You just need about an hour to clean your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a couple of parts on your indoor HVAC system.
Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?
Cleaning Out the Outdoor AC Unit
Choose a warm day to wash your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is best. That way, you can test your equipment once you’ve cleaned it.
You’ll only need a couple of items:
- Wet-dry vacuum and hose with a soft brush attachment
- Butter knife
- Damp rag
- Small, round paintbrush
- Replacement furnace filter (if necessary)
Related: How AC Repair and Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money
Five Steps to Clean the Outside Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Cut the electricity to your air conditioner at the breaker box.
2. Clean the Outside
Remove waste from the equipment. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.
Then run the vacuum to slowly clean the metallic fins. These parts are also called condenser coils and divert heat away from your system.
You need to be considerate of these fragile coils. Warped or crumpled fins can affect efficiency.
3. Fix Bent Fins
Use a butter knife to straighten bent fins. You can also buy a fin comb from an appliance part retailer. A pro from Lakeside Heating & Air should handle extensive damage.
4. Clean the Inside
After removing the fan, fish out leaves and other yard waste. Then mop the inside of the system with a wet sponge.
The only coil cleaner you need is water. Use gentle pressure from a hose nozzle to clean the fins, spraying water from the inside out. Reinstall the fan once you’re done.
5. Test Your Air Conditioner
It’s safe to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not operating properly, contact us a call at 509-284-4265.
Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later
Then, You Can Clean the Indoor Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Cut the electricity to your furnace at the breaker box.
2. Check Your Filter
Furnace filters need to be exchanged every couple of months, depending on the type you use.
Can’t remember when you last replaced yours? Remove it and tilt it toward the light. If there’s no light visible, replace it.
3. Clean the Inside
Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.
Then take a look at your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a supple plastic tube. If it’s dirty, you can clean it by flowing diluted bleach through the tube to clean the line. Or you can replace the tube.
Scrub the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Connect the drain tube and switch the power back on.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall
Don’t Forget a Tune-Up Again
Annual air conditioner maintenance from Lakeside Heating & Air can make your system more efficient and help it last longer. We also have practical service agreements, so you won’t forget to book your routine tune-up!