All residential air conditioning units require regular maintenance. While hiring a skilled technician to do it is perhaps the best way to go, there are some things you can do to ensure your AC unit will provide you with the cool air you need to be comfortable at home. Here are a few residential airconditioning care & maintenance tips to keep your AC unit running smoothly all year round and to make it last for a longer time.
First of all, you may want to know that air conditioning can be a source of bacteria and other harmful germs. As the filters get clogged, they become effective traps for various airborne germs and particles. As debris and grime accumulate on these filters, germs and bacteria will start to develop at a fast rate. Whenever you start your AC unit, some of these germs and particles will become airborne. You’ll inhale them without even knowing it, exposing yourself to this insidious health hazard. In order to prevent this from happening, you should regularly remove and clean these filters. Consult your owner’s manual to see how to remove the filters. If you can’t find the manual, make a note of the manufacturer and model of your air conditioning unit and search for it online. Chances are you’re going to find what you need. Anyway, the main point is to learn how to remove the filters without damaging them. Once you manage to get them out of the unit, you’ll have to clean them carefully with lukewarm water. Pat them dry, let them sit for a while, and then put them back into the unit. This is one of the most important residential airconditioning care & maintenance tips you’ll ever get. By performing this type of cleaning once or twice a year, you eliminate this health hazard and you ensure that your unit maintains its effectiveness for a longer period of time.
You may also vacuum your AC unit from time to time. For best results, consider removing the outer shell before vacuuming. If your vacuum cleaner has a narrower head with a brush, use it instead of your regular one. You’ll have an easier time at removing the dust from the inside of the unit.
The other thing you have to consider is that the insulating coating of exterior pipes is subject to a lot of wear and tear caused by rain, snow, freezing temperatures and other such factors. Birds may also remove parts of this material to build their nests. You have to check the condition of the exterior pipes and to repair the insulation whenever you notice any damage. If you don’t know how to do it, though, you should probably contact a residential airconditioning care & maintenance contractor to ask for help. If you live in an apartment building, you should avoid repairing the outer insulation by yourself if you aren’t able to do it from the ground. Leaning out of the window is a huge hazard in the absence of adequate safety equipment and training.
Before attempting to clean your AC unit or to remove its covers, remember to unplug the appliance. This is the best way to ensure that you’re on the safe side when it comes to wiping off the dust, removing the filters, or vacuuming. As you don’t know what are the high voltage elements, you shouldn’t take any risks. Unplugging is a must. You do it for your own safety.
If you notice that the air coming out of your unit isn’t cold enough, you should probably seek for expert assistance. A technician will be able to detect any gas leaks and remediate the problem. You don’t have the tools or the skills to do it, so don’t waste your time trying.
As a general rule, you should have all your airconditioning units professionally cleaned once a year, preferably before the arrival of the hot season. If you postpone this for too long, you may have to wait for a very long time to have a technician come over to help you, as they would be extremely busy.
These are some basic tips that will help you enjoy a comfortable temperature in your home without having to replace your AC systems too often. Take good care of them and they will serve you for many years to come.