It Is Important to Maintain Your Air Conditioning System
Posted on The Cooler Blog May 17, 2013 by Terry Jones
Did you know that one year of run time on an air conditioner is equivalent to 100,000 miles on your car. Would you neglect maintenance on your car for 100,000 miles? Without an oil change every 3,000 miles, your car will surely require very expensive repairs. Your air conditioner is no different. Without annual maintenance, a dirty air conditioner runs hot, consumes more electricity, and sustains irreparable damage to the compressor and fan motor. For this reason, all a/c manufacturers require annual maintenance to keep the factory warranty in effect.
What’s involved in an air conditioner tune-up? The most important part of annual a/c maintenance is a coil cleaning. All summer long, the condenser fan moves air through the condenser coil to cool your home. This coil acts like a big air filter, catching pollen, bugs, grass clippings, dirt, cottonwood and dandelion seeds, and much more. A thorough coil cleaning is needed every year to return the system to full capacity and maximum efficiency.
Many a/c manufacturers including Trane, Carrier, and Lennox protect their air conditioner coils with full wrap-around cabinets. These cabinets must be disassembled to properly clean the coil. It’s not a bad idea to watch your technician to be sure they disassemble and thoroughly clean the entire coil, not just the cabinet.
In addition to cleaning the outdoor coil, an a/c tune-up should include:
- Lubricate the fan motor
- Testing the capacitors
- Inspect the evaporator
- Check the contractor
- Tighten electrical connections
- Adjust refrigerant charge
- Monitor expansion valve operation
If you take care of your air conditioner, it will return the favor with years of reliable, efficient operation. Neglect your a/c and you can expect high electric bills, burnt fan motors, and early compressor failure.