With spring temperatures hitting the Twin Cities, it’s time to start
preparing for the warmer weather. Here’s 7 tips to jumpstart your
air conditioner: Use a garden hose to give the outside unit a quick once over. Don’t
use high pressure as this will damage the fins on the coil and cause all
kinds of problems. All you want to do is wash off all the dirt, leaves
and other debris so air can pass freely through the coil.
Physically inspect the surroundings of the outside air conditioning unit:
Cut down shrubs and weeds, along with other plants that have sprung up
around the unit. Trim back your plantings and bushes to give a two foot
clearance it. This essential step ensures that the unit will manage to
draw in sufficient amounts of air to cool and refrigerant.
Check the air filter: It is best to start the air conditioning season with
a new air filter in place. A dirty filter will reduce air flow and may
cause the air conditioning evaporator coil (“A” coil) to freeze
up, and damage the furnace. Air filters may need to be replaced monthly,
quarterly or yearly. Permanent air filters or electronic air filters require
regular cleaning for optimal performance.
Check condensate drain line: Be sure your condensate drain line from the
indoor coil, (“A” coil) from either an up flow furnace or
a down flow furnace to your floor drain or condensate pump is free of
debris and will allow water to drain freely.
Turn your humidifier off: Be sure the humidifier damper is set to SUMMER
or CLOSED position. It should not be necessary to shut the water valve
supplying water to the humidifier.
Prepare thermostat and air conditioning system for summer: Set the thermostat
to COOL, check the circuit breaker to confirm it has not been tripped,
and that the outside electrical disconnect located near the outdoor AC
unit is engaged. Be sure the thermostat is set to lower than the inside
temperature of your home, so the air conditioner will start.
Listen for changes in noise: The first day it reaches 70 degrees in March
or April, turn your air conditioning unit on. Listen for any changes in
noise from the previous cooling season. If you notice any changes in noise
and sounds, it is important to have the operation of your air conditioning
unit properly maintained by a qualified technician.
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