Make Your AC Unit Last Longer

Proper Airflow, A Clean System, And Preventative Maintenance Are Vital For Your AC

A central air conditioning system is expensive, so you want to maintain it properly to give it a long life. Something simple, such as not changing the filter when it's dirty, can cause significant damage to your HVAC unit. Your air conditioner needs unobstructed air flow, regular cleaning, and periodic preventative maintenance to keep it in good working order and to prevent breakdowns and premature failure. Here's a look at how you can provide these vital needs.

Keep The Air Flowing

Anything that obstructs the flow of air through the HVAC has the potential to cause problems. The biggest culprit is the filter. When it is coated with dust, the HVAC can't pull air through the filter, and that can lead to overheating and excess wear and tear. Plus, with so much dust on the filter, some of it works its way inside the unit to coat the coils and other working parts. The buildup of dust inside the air conditioner leads to further airflow problems that can cause your AC to ice over or shut down.

Another potential obstruction is from weeds or lawn equipment blocking the flow of air around the outdoor condenser. Keep a few feet of free space around all sides of the AC unit. This is easy to accomplish if you establish a zone with gravel that keeps weeds from getting too close to the condenser.

Keep Your AC Clean

You can clean parts of your HVAC system to keep as much dust out as possible. You can vacuum out the registers and vents to keep them free of dust clogs and hair mats from pets. You can remove the outer cover and vacuum the inside of the HVAC so that dust doesn't get pulled into the internal parts. However, don't remove the inner panel cover where the working parts are maintained. An HVAC technician should only remove that during a service call for safety reasons.

Your air conditioning system has three separate parts that work together. The condenser is outdoors, the ducts are usually in the attic, and the air handler is indoors. All three of these parts must function well and be kept clean. Your ducts won't get as dirty as fast as the rest of your HVAC, but the rest of the AC system will need to be cleaned professionally at least yearly. In between visits, you can clean the external parts and keep leaves and dirt away from the outdoor unit.

Have Preventative Maintenance On Schedule

If your AC and furnace share the same ducts and air handler, then having two service calls each year is a good practice. Have preventative maintenance done on the AC before summer begins. The HVAC technician thoroughly cleans the unit and performs maintenance tasks like testing the electrical system, checking the refrigerant, and lubricating parts.

You may want to sign a service agreement with the HVAC maintenance company to provide service once or twice yearly as needed so you won't get lax about it or forget. Things that may not seem important such as preventative maintenance and cleaning can mean the difference between getting a long life from your new AC and having to invest in costly repairs that could have been avoided.

Contact your local air conditioning services today to learn more.