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Air Conditioner Maintenance

Air Conditioner Maintenance


Even though you may not be a qualified HVAC technician there are several things you can do to you improve your air conditioner’s efficiency and prolong it’s life. As contractors prices increase and pay raises decrease you may not be able to have a air conditioning technician clean and check your system every year like most manufactures recommend. It is still a good idea to have a qualified service man check your refrigerant pressures and temperatures every few years to obtain maximum system efficiency. Many things done on a preventive maintenance can be done by most home owners and do not require any specialty tools or instruments.

Many people don’t realize that the furnace filter they are accustom to changing is also used for your central air system. Make sure to inspect your system air filter monthly and replace as needed. A clean air filter is just as if not more important for air conditioning than heating.You will also want to make sure most of the supply registers for you system are open. Air conditioners are sized for a specific amount of air flow so if it is restricted by closed register problems may occur. Be sure the drain line from the indoor coil or evaporator is clear and that there are no kinks in the hose. If this line seems very dirty you can pour common house hold bleach through it to kill growing bacteria. Condensate pan treatment tablets or padsshould be placed in the evaporator to prevent mold and bacteria from growing in the pan.

Next you will want to turn the power off to the out door unit or condenser at the breaker and remove all grass and shrubs growing with in 8-10 inches of the coil that surrounds the air conditioner. Use a garden hose to soak down the coil surface area making sure not to use so much pressure that you damage the coil fins. Apply a condenser coil cleaner product that comes in a aerosol spray can or mixable concentrate and let soak for 3-5 minutes. Remove the units top and flush coil clean with a garden hose preferably from the inside out. Oil the condenser fan motor with 4-5 drops of a light weight oil, provided the motor has oiling ports. Follow up with a coil coating treatment spray to help keep dirt from sticking in the future. 

Reassemble and restore power to the air conditioner. Set your thermostat to cool and below roomtemperature. After letting in run for 5-10 minutes check the discharge temperature at one of the supply registers closest to the indoor air handler. A quick rule of thumb is that you should have a 15 to 20 degree difference in supply air temperature and room air temperature. So if it is 76 degrees in the house your supply air temperature should be around 56 to 61 degrees. If the temperature difference is less than 15 degrees you may have to have a air conditioning technician check the refrigerant levels.

Coil Cleaner, Condensate pan treatment, Coil coating treatment and other HVAC maintenance products can be purchased online at http://www.mainsupplies.com/index.php?main_page=