With summer coming to an end in Manassas, now is a great time to get ahead on air conditioner maintenance.
If you haven’t taken care of it this year, it could be blocked with dust and debris from your yard. This accumulation can reduce your unit’s efficiency and cause it to malfunction. Or make it wear out sooner.
We suggest having your air conditioning system professionally serviced annually. Why? A clean system can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on utility expenses.
Regular AC maintenance also helps our technicians locate and handle slight issues before they become costly problems.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing
Some of the work we do includes:
- Inspecting the blower, motor, drain line and coils
- Checking pressure and temperature
- Examining lines, refrigerant amounts and connections
It’s not too late to have a tune-up done this fall—and we can get your furnace prepared for heating season too.
There’s also some work you can do alone between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to wash your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a few pieces on your indoor HVAC system.
Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?
How to Clean Your Outside AC Unit
Choose a warm day to clean your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is great. That way, you can run your system once you’ve cleaned it.
You’ll only need a couple of tools:
- Wet-dry vacuum and hose with a soft brush attachment
- Butter knife
- Damp rag
- Small, round paintbrush
- Replacement furnace filter (if necessary)
Related: How AC Repair and Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money
Five Steps to Clean the Outside Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Stop the power to your air conditioner at the breaker box.
2. Clean the Outside
Take out rubbish from the unit. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.
Then use the vacuum to gently clean the metallic fins. These components are also referred to as condenser coils and move heat away from your unit.
You need to be considerate of these delicate coils. Bent or crinkled fins can influence efficiency.
3. Fix Bent Fins
Use a butter knife to adjust warped fins. You can also get a fin comb from an appliance part retailer. A pro from Fire & Ice HVAC should handle severe damage.
4. Clean the Inside
After extracting the fan, fish out leaves and other yard waste. Then wipe the inside of the system with a wet rag.
The only coil cleaner you need is water. Use slight pressure from a hose nozzle to rinse the fins, directing water from the inside out. Put the fan back in once you’re finished.
5. Test Your Air Conditioner
Now it’s time to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not operating like it should, contact us a call at 703-595-4157.
Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later
Three Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit
1. Turn Off the Power
Cut the power to your furnace at the breaker box.
2. Check Your Filter
Furnace filters must be exchanged every few months, depending on the model you use.
Not sure when you last checked yours? Take it out and angle it toward the light. If there’s no light visible, replace it.
3. Clean the Inside
Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.
Then take a look at your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a flexible plastic tube. If it’s dirty, you can freshen it by pouring diluted bleach through the tube to clean the line. Or you can replace the tube.
Wash the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Connect the drain tube and turn the power back on.
Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall
Never Forget a Tune-Up Again
Annual air conditioner maintenance from Fire & Ice HVAC can make your unit more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide practical service agreements, so you won’t forget to book your routine tune-up!