You’re not thinking about the summer heat right now and that’s fine. July is still two months away, random rain has somehow filtered into spring, and walking the dog seems like a jacket or sweater occasion. This is exactly what summer in So Cal does. It shows up late to the party, but when it hits it hits hard and if you’re not ready – the punch could knock your HVAC system right out.
Our Accurate team compiled a checklist for your home’s HVAC system so when you do need to run your air conditioner for lengthy times, you won’t have to worry about any unexpected breakdowns or mechanical failures. There’s more to an HVAC system than just the machine itself. As Accurate has said before, your home is an ecosystem within itself and everything is finely interconnected from your air vents to your window frames. Here’s a comprehensive list of items you can check to make sure your home will be ready for summer.
Visit your A/C.
Have you checked your air conditioner’s area? See any debris or newfound vegetation growing? If there are sticks, bushes or tree branches blocking your air conditioner outside, you should clear the area. You’ll also want to check for any possible dirt, sand or natural build up. Allowing your air conditioner to breath out in the open will maximize its potential to run at a high capacity.
Clear your A/C’s drainage hole.
Beneath the cabinet base of your air conditioner sits a drainage hole for condensation. You can usually find it beneath the evaporator fins. The hole must be kept clear to avoid any possible mold build up. There are a few easy techniques you can use to clean this out – ask our Accurate Team and we can help!
Change the Air Filters.
How bad do they look? Have you seen worse? Over the winter months and hanging over from last summer, most likely your filters have built up with dust and lingering pollutants caught in the air. One of the best ways to ensure your air quality isn’t jeopardized is to make sure your filters are always new and clean. This will allow your air conditioner to function properly.
Clean your Vents.
You may have the best HVAC system on the market but that doesn’t matter if the air can’t even enter your home. Make sure your vents are dust free and the air can properly flow through all of your vent openings. Take them off and clean them up and you will definitely notice a difference. For bonus clean air and maximizing circulation, you can also remove the covers from your bathroom fans, use soap and water and shine them up. Use an old toothbrush to detail the fan blades, just make sure the power is off when you do this.
What’s the status of your thermostat. Make sure the batteries are fresh. Sometimes when an air conditioner seems to malfunction, people can often mistake this for what they think is an expensive problem or electrical issue. If your thermostat isn’t sending the right message to your system, it won’t function at the capacity it actually should.
Alternatively, consider upgrading to a smarter thermostat, perhaps one that can be integrated with your phone. These are amazing because you can set your A/C system while you are still at work and control it so whenever you walk in the door it’s always the perfect temp and timing.
Check your Windows.
Don’t look out your window, look around your window. Are there any air leaks or gaps that need sealing? A common problem miscue for A/C system failures is that if your home has air leaks this forces your air conditioner to work harder than it should. Seal your leaks so your A/C system doesn’t burn itself out by cooling the neighborhood.
How about a test-run?
Turn it on, listen and assess. See what state your air conditioner is in and how fast it cools your rooms and what the air feels like. Sometimes when you run the air conditioner for the first time you may notice a different smell or a difference in the air. If the air seems dry or thick this could mean you have dust build up. Make sure your air conditioner is on track and take note if anything seems out of the ordinary.
It’s like getting an oil change and a carwash for your A/C unit. If you can’t complete this entire checklist or leave a few of these off your to-do list, this is the one item that is your diamond in the rough. Scheduling a maintenance tune-up will definitely save you from any breakdown or mechanical failure during the high heat of Southern California’s summer months. The other items are very impactful and crucial for high-efficiency, but a tune-up alone will save you money and extend the lifetime on your HVAC system.
Follow this checklist so you can concentrate more on beach trips, outdoor activities and barbeques. Then coming home will be a comfortable cool wind down to your best summer yet.