Fall Air Conditioner Maintenance
“But when fall comes, kicking summer out on its treacherous ass as it always does one day after the midpoint of September, it stays awhile like an old friend you have missed. It settles in the way an old friend will settle into your favorite chair and take out his pipe and light it then fill the afternoon with stories of places he has been and things he has done since last he saw you.” – Stephen King, Salem’s Lot
Friends, I’m not sure where the good Mr. King was when he penned this quote however I am guessing it wasn’t here in sunny South Florida. One of the things I miss the most about being up north is the change of seasons. We just have a stunning lack of seasons here. Yes, the calendar may change, the days get shorter and the temperatures drop a little, we however do not experience a true autumn season.
The change of dates reminds me of a few things as September begins, Christmas will be here soon, the snow birds are coming, traffic is going to get a lot worse and it’s time to get the AC system serviced after a long hard summer!
Okay, I’m guessing you thought about the first three things on the above list and probably not so much the last. Your air conditioning system has been working it’s hardest over the last three or four months and it is time to give it a little love and affection. Seriously. Your AC has kept you cool and sweat free for all this time, doesn’t it deserve a little love?
I have discussed this in the past and as a reminder, properly maintaining your air conditioner will not only give you the longest life from the equipment, it will help keep your electric bills lower and hopefully prevent unexpected breakdowns and repairs. So, what goes into an air conditioner maintenance and tune up you ask? Let’s take a look…
Our friendly neighborhood AC maintenance tech is going to perform the following tasks.
- Flush and chemically treat the air handler drain line. This will help prevent drain line backups and hopefully ensure no water damage to your home. They are also going to check the function of the safety devices on the drain line to make sure if it does backup the air handler will shut down preventing water damage.
- Clean indoor and outdoor coils. The process of air conditioning involves getting rid of heat by air passing thru the indoor and outdoor coils and any debris that builds up in those coils reduces the airflow, thus reducing the efficiency and effectiveness of the air conditioner.
- All electrical connections are going to be checked and tightened. As units are running the vibrations can cause things to loosen slightly which can lead to bigger problems such as electrical shorts or unexpected breakdowns
- Check all amp draws of all electrical components. Higher than usual amp draws indicate that disposable parts in the air conditioning unit are on their way to failure, changing them at time of maintenance can prevent the dreaded Tuesday afternoon “my AC unit isn’t working” phone call.
- Refrigerant levels are going to be checked. In a properly functioning system those levels should not have changed. If the refrigerant charge is a little low that may indicate a small leak in the system that can be addressed before it becomes a big leak leading to a big repair cost.
- Duct connection points are going to be checked. As with anything duct work deteriorates with age and checking those connection points to see if repairs are needed can save you lots of cool air and of course money.
There my friend is an air conditioning maintenance check in a nut shell. As I have said in the past, you change the oil in your car every few thousand miles and you get a physical from your doctor annually. Remember, your air conditioner deserves the same attention to give you its best performance and longest life.
Until next time my faithful readers, please remember that two wrongs don’t make a right, they do however make a good excuse.
House Whisperer out!!