HVAC systems deliver fresh, clean air to single family homes, apartment buildings, condos and commercial projects alike. An HVAC technician’s physically demanding role often includes working in ladders, crawl spaces and rooftops – an occupation suited for those who enjoy physical challenges!
Maintaining your HVAC system on an annual basis with regular maintenance can save money and prevent breakdowns that could be more expensive in the future. Creating an HVAC maintenance plan will keep your system in top shape while saving money from future breakdowns that could prove more expensive to fix.
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Change the Filters
Dust and debris accumulates on filters, creating an obstacle to air flow that creates problems ranging from poor temperature regulation to increased energy costs, while mold or bacteria colonies also negatively impact circulation of air. This results in issues for temperature regulation as well as cost increases as well as creating mold colonies which further impair circulation of air. Read this HVAC cleaning article from Cinch Home Services for data about cleaning.
Once located, remove and install a new air filter, replacing any old ones that might still be installed with one that fits perfectly in its place. Finally, wipe down the enclosure using a cloth rag so as to keep dust and dirt from entering your system and spray down your outdoor unit to get rid of debris like cottonwood fluff.
Clean the Condenser Fins
Dirty coils impede the transfer of heat from your home to outside air and force your system to work harder than it should, so regular cleaning of these components should be undertaken.
Before starting, put on your work gloves and remove larger debris such as sticks, pebbles, or grass clippings from between the protective grille and aluminum fins – being careful not to bend their delicate fins during this process.
At any hardware store, there are various AC coil cleaners to be found. When selecting one that meets these criteria (non-flammable, non-conductive and high solvency level) spray generously onto fins and coils for at least five to ten minutes to loosen dirt particles and loosen debris.
Once the dirt has softened, use a metal fin comb or brush to straighten any bent fins before sweeping them with a damp cloth and repeating as necessary until all dirt has been eliminated from coils and fins are clean.
Clean the Evaporator Coil
Evaporator coils on an HVAC system allow cool air to pass through while refrigerant absorbs and releases heat back into your home or office, but dirty coils prevent this process from being conducted effectively, forcing your HVAC system to work harder in order to achieve cooling temperatures at the desired levels.
Clean air conditioning coils effectively with professional-grade cleaner, pump sprayer, and fin brush. There are various types and prices of cleaners on the market designed specifically to loosen dirt; when spraying ensure that you aim directly at the coils for maximum effectiveness.
A nylon scrub brush can also help in clearing away larger chunks of dirt, or “jostle” it into pieces small enough for vacuuming (with light touch). If bent fins appear on coils, consider using a fin brush to straighten them for improved airflow through them and increased efficiency of your AC unit.
Check the Drainage
Even the highest performing HVAC system will eventually show signs of wear and tear, so don’t wait for it to collapse when you have no means of cooling your home. Instead, plan ahead now so it won’t leave you without cooling when needed.
Preventive maintenance is key to prolonging the lifespan of an HVAC system, and inspecting its drain line should form part of this routine.
As your cooling system works to cool your home, condensation forms on its coils that flows down into a drain pan made of either metal or plastic – these pans may eventually corrode and develop holes over time.
Leaving water nowhere to go but back up into your ceiling. This is a common spring and summer problem; but you can prevent it by regularly inspecting drain lines for signs of clogs. If standing water appears around or near the drain pan, turn off air conditioning units immediately and use shop vac or rags to absorb excess moisture.