Before beginning any kind of A/C repair or inspection, be sure it’s powered off in order to prevent damages to any of its many parts. It’s also an important step for ensuring your personal safety, as air conditioner repair can sometimes be a tricky task.
Cleaning the Condenser
Inspect the area around the condenser for any debris that could potentially prevent air from flowing into the system. To help the condenser breathe, make sure there are at least a couple of feet between the condenser and any shrubbery, fencing, or tree branches that are in the area. Use a regular garden hose to then wash both the inside and outside of the unit.
If you suspect small leaks in your A/C system, you can usually fix them from the condenser’s end by using a refrigerant leak repair kit. It simply clips to the condenser’s suction line and sends sealant throughout the system, sealing any small leaks along the way. Be sure to also check the fan belt, which connects the motor and the blower, can weaken or wear down over time and require readjustment, more lubrication of the bearings, or even a total replacement. Different A/C systems require different fan belts, so make sure you find one that’s specific to your system before purchasing. After you repair or replace your fan belt, make sure there is at least half to three quarters of an inch of slack in the line. Fan belts that are too loose or too tight are more likely to break.
Ductwork & Filters
Now it’s time to start following the A/C system indoors. First, you’ll want to search your house for all registers (vents) and make sure that any rugs, carpeting, or furniture does not block them. If you have floor registers, make sure to look inside for any foreign objects; it’s not uncommon for toys or other small household objects to fall through the vents. Next you’ll want to inspect the ductwork running through your attic or basement. Make sure that they are properly insulated and that there are no gaps in the seams. Improper insulation can cause irregular condensation on the cold metal coils and lead to leaks that can seep through your ceiling.
After the ductwork has been properly inspected, go ahead and check your filters for any clogs. It’s recommended that you change filters at least once a month to keep your system running smoothly. Filters that protect against common allergens will tend to clog quicker, so they require more frequent attention.
See also: Spring is Blooming, Unfortunately so are Your Allergies
Consider hiring an air conditioning repair professional to regularly check your A/C system. There are many parts that can go unnoticed by the untrained eye, and a professional can help prevent future problems by providing proper, detailed maintenance.
To ensure that you receive only the best professional help when you have an A/C break down, AHS provides a home warranty plan that uses trusted, local contractors.