We are now in the middle of “maintenance season” for air conditioners. During the spring is the best time to arrange to have an HVAC technician come to your home and inspect, tune-up, and clean the system. After the annual maintenance visit, your air conditioning should work its best through the summer, experiencing minimal repair trouble and maximum efficiency.
Although you need to have a professional perform your AC’s maintenance, there are a few steps you should take during the rest of the summer to help get the most from your cooling system. Perhaps the most important is to change the filter for the AC once a month. (Or, if the AC uses a permanent filter, clean it once a month.) There are three very good reasons why this is necessary:
ONE: It helps keep the air conditioner energy efficient
The filter is the location where air from the return vents enters the AC’s cabinet to have the heat removed from it via the evaporator coils. But after a month, enough debris will become caught in the filter that it will start to choke off the airflow. This will force the air conditioner to strain, and it will raise your energy bills—sometimes as much as 30%. Keep the filter clean and you can avoid these cost hikes.
TWO: It prevents damage to the internal components
The main reason for an air filter is to keep contaminants in the air wafting through the return vents (such as dust, dander, and lint) from getting inside the air conditioner, where it can damage important motors and capacitors. By regularly changing the filter, you will significantly lower the chance of the AC needing repairs during the summer.
THREE: It will keep the evaporator coils from icing over
Frost developing along the evaporator coils is a major and unfortunately common threat to air conditioners. One of the reasons this can happen is a clogged filter that prevents enough warm air from moving across the cold refrigerant in the coils. When ice starts to materialize, it impedes heat exchange and eventually makes the air conditioner unable to perform its job.
Changing the air filter is a simple task, and when your maintenance technician shows up for the spring inspection and tune-up, he or she can show you how to do it. For the rest of the summer, change it once a month, and keep it up as long as you regularly run your AC.
To arrange for air conditioning maintenance, call Pelletier Mechanical Services, LLC at (860) 283-0316. We service the following towns in Connecticut: Waterbury, Bristol, Torrington and the surrounding areas.