After a long season of intense heating demand, your HVAC system is on deck for cooling duties. This makes spring the perfect time to take care of your ductwork, prime your air conditioner for the challenges that lie ahead, and undo the ravages of winter. Practicing diligent springtime maintenance is one of the best things that you can do to protect the HVAC equipment in your Tolleson, AZ, home. Following are six tips to help you get started.
1. Replace Your HVAC Air Filter
Among the easiest and most important HVAC maintenance tasks is changing the HVAC air filter. This component should be swapped out about once every one to three months. The spring season often brings a considerable influx of airborne particulates with both higher pollen counts and increased foot traffic. Warmer weather sees residents taking more trips outside and tracking more dust, dirt, and other grime back in when reentering their homes.
Spring can also be a time of increased shedding among indoor pets. Thus, not only should you put a new air filter in, but you may even want to consider upgrading to a filter with a higher maximum efficiency reporting value (MERV) rating and increasing the frequency of filter changes throughout the spring and summer seasons.
2. Schedule AC Tune-Up Service
The surest way to prime your air conditioner for warmer weather and increased demand is by scheduling a professional tune-up. If your air conditioner is still under its manufacturer warranty or if it’s covered by your home warranty, scheduling an annual tune-up service is key for maintaining these protections.
A springtime AC tune-up will give us a chance to catch and correct minor problems early on and long before they’ve spiraled out of control. We can replace worn components, tighten loose connections, address faulty electrical parts, and inspect and flush the unit’s condensate drain. We can even provide refrigerant recharge service when needed. AC tune-ups optimize cooling system performance, promote efficiency, and prolong the life span of cooling equipment.
3. Clean All Air Registers, Vents, and Grilles
Check the air registers, vents, and grilles throughout your home for buildups of lint-like debris. These can be removed with a damp cloth or with your vacuum cleaner’s hose attachment. Clearing these away will ensure good airflow when the air conditioner is on. It will also give your indoor air quality (IAQ) a noticeable boost.
4. Clear the Perimeter of Your Air Conditioner’s Outside Unit
The perimeter of your air conditioner’s outside condenser should be completely free of debris. Small rocks, twigs, leaves, and other items in this area can get blown into and trapped beneath the condenser’s covering. Overgrown weeds and foliage can inhibit airflow and cause overheating. Take the time to cut back nearby bushes and trees, and be sure to sweep and rake the area as needed. You should also set a schedule for repeating these steps throughout the spring season so that new growth doesn’t cause future problems.
5. Tighten Your Home’s Envelope
Surprisingly, one of the most important forms of springtime HVAC maintenance doesn’t involve your HVAC equipment at all. If you haven’t done so already, sealing up gaps and cracks around your windows and doors will improve your air conditioner’s efficiency. Moreover, addressing major sources of air loss reduces stress on home cooling equipment. Spring is also a good time to replace old insulation or to add additional insulation with higher R values.
6. Take Care of Your HVAC System’s Supporting Elements
Your air conditioner isn’t the only thing that needs springtime attention. If your HVAC ductwork hasn’t been cleaned in more than five years, schedule an appointment for professional duct cleaning to improve your IAQ and identify air leaks. Replacing damaged ductwork will prevent air pressure issues, limit energy waste, and boost your overall home comfort.
To further limit your energy use, have your thermostat inspected and replaced or relocated as needed. This unit should not be installed too close to your oven or any other heat-generating appliance. You should also relocate your thermostat if it’s on a wall that gets direct sunlight during the mid-portion of the day. If you haven’t invested in a smart thermostat, doing so now will allow you to tailor your air conditioner’s performance to perfectly suit your spring and summer schedules.
Finally, although many homeowners schedule furnace maintenance in the fall, just ahead of the winter season, spring is also a good time to have this unit checked out. During your AC tune-up service, have our technician look for evidence of significant wear and other age-related problems. This is a great way to identify the imminent need for furnace replacement while you still have time to plan for this expense.
We’ve been proudly serving residents of Tolleson, Arizona, since 2002. We offer heating, cooling, ductwork, and home automation services. If you need help getting your HVAC system spring- and summer-ready, we’ve got you covered. Call El Indio AC to schedule an appointment today!