"How's the Air In There?" Getting Your Air Conditioner Ready for Summer

Posted on: 28 May 2014


When spring temperatures begin to climb and heat and humidity become more the norm than the exception, it is finally time to get you home air conditioner ready for summer. Air conditioners, like other home appliances and tools, need a spring tune up to run effectively and cool efficiently. Follow these simple steps in late spring to get your air conditioner ready for those sweltering summer days:

  • Change the air filters. Air filters are designed to trap small allergy-causing particles and help keep the air in your home cleaner. Change the air filters in your air conditioner before your first use and check them once each month during the summer season. A clogged air filter reduces air flow and can cause the cooling coils in the unit to freeze up and shut the entire system down.
  • Check the condensation-removal system. Part of your air conditioner’s job is to remove moisture from the air. As warm, moist air passes through the air-conditioning cooling coils, condensation occurs. Removal of the condensation is done through a gravity fed pipe that empties into a nearby floor drain or you may have a pan under your blower unit. In either case, check to be sure the condensation-removal system is free from blockages or debris so that moisture can leave the unit appropriately.
  • Clear away debris from the outdoor condenser. A big portion of your air-conditioning system is outside your home in the form of the outdoor condenser. During the winter months condensers can take a beating and get clogged with debris. A clogged or blocked condenser cannot work as efficiently as a clean one, so taking time to clear away debris can save you money on cooling costs.
  • Wash the outdoor condenser. Outdoor condensers also collect a great deal of dust, dirt, and pollen on the inside of the unit during winter and early spring. Give your condenser a thorough washing with a garden hose to remove any internal grime or debris.
  • Clean and inspect your ductwork. Over the winter months, duct work can collect dust, hair and dirt from forced air furnace use. Vents that have also been closed to redirect heat to cold spots need to be opened and cleaned for increased indoor-air quality. Take time to check each vent in your house and make sure it isn’t blocked by furniture or other items. Remove each vent and clean thoroughly before sliding into the open position. Use a vacuum to clean out any dirt or debris that can be seen in the ductwork and replace the vent cover.
  • Schedule a whole-house ductwork cleaning appointment. Having your ductwork professionally cleaned once each year gets rid of dirt and allergens that build up in your system over time.

When to Call an Air Conditioner Repairman

After cleaning and inspecting your air conditioner and turning it on for the first time, take notice of when the condenser kicks on. Check the air that is coming through the vents to see if it is cool, and make sure the unit turns off when the house reaches the desired temperature. If you notice your unit running constantly without turning off, or the air is just not as cool as you think it should be, it is time to call for air conditioning repair in Seattle WA. An air conditioner repairman can diagnose and fix problems that only those trained in HVAC technology can solve.

Maintaining and cleaning your outdoor unit, checking and replacing filters, and maintaining vents are something any homeowner can do. But when big problems arise, calling an expert means you will be cool and comfortable all summer long. Call local businesses to see if they match your needs and your budget.