Fall is the best time to tend to annual AC care, as you can both service the unit and prepare it for the winter months. Schedule your AC winterization after the unit has been shut down for the season.
1. Maintain the Exterior Unit
On most homes, the exterior unit is installed near a wall on the side of the house. Debris such as fallen leaves and overgrown grass can collect around it, but this should be cleared away before winter. After raking up leaves and plant material, trim back grass and landscaping plants to create a clear area around the AC unit. Hose off the outside to remove dust and dirt.
2. Schedule a Tune-Up
Fall is a good time for an annual AC tuneup since the technicians won't be as busy as they are in spring and summer. During a tuneup, the tech will remove the cover from the exterior unit and clean out the inside. The blower assembly and fan will be tuned, lubricated, and tested. The tech will service and check over the entire electrical and mechanical systems in the air conditioner.
3. Drain the Condensate System
Every AC system develops condensation, which is drained via a condensate system. A pump moves the moisture through a drain line that empties into a condensate catch pan. Some pans have extra drains inside to route the excess moisture away from the AC and house. Flush out the drain and make sure the pan is empty once you shut down the system for the winter season. You don't want any remaining moisture that could freeze and damage a line.
4. Cover the Unit
Covering the AC unit during winter will keep excess moisture, debris, and ice out of it. Further, a good cover can protect the top of the unit from damages that could occur if heavy snow or icicles fall from the roof and onto the unit. You can purchase top pads designed to fit your AC, or you can make your own from plywood. Just leave the sides open so air can circulate through and dry out any moisture that makes its way into the AC.
5. Clean the Filter Assembly
The most obvious interior AC cleaning is the filter and filter slot. Don't leave a dirty filter in the system over the winter months, as moisture and debris in it may lead to mold and mildew growth in the filter slot. Change the filter out for a new one, and take a few minutes to vacuum out the slot it fits within. You may want to wipe it down with a damp cloth, as well, to remove any stubborn dust.
Contact an AC service for more help with fall maintenance.
To learn more, contact a company like WILD WEST PLUMBING near you.