DIY: How to Home Service Your Air Conditioner Unit

Thanks to technology, HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) systems are constantly evolving over time and becoming an essential component of every home or business. By removing contaminants from the air, a good HVAC system helps everybody in your household live comfortably in a cleaner atmosphere by eliminating adverse circumstances in your location. HVAC systems are composed of multiple components that function together, and they need to be serviced regularly.

Neglecting services might escalate small issues into more serious and costly ones. When it comes to air conditioner (AC) maintenance, this article, inspired by the experts at dependable HVAC professional, aims to enlighten you on what you can do at home if you choose not to call the professionals.

How to Home Service Your Air Conditioner Unit

Cleaning Your External Unit

The condenser in your unit is one of the most important air conditioning system components, so watch it for problems. Depending on your type, it’s normally placed outside your home, although it can also be in your garage, attic, or down in the basement. It normally has copper tubes extending from it to your house, which are occasionally covered by a foam layer. 

It operates by a heat transfer technique that cools the air blown inside while pulling heated air out of the house. To maintain your air conditioner in good working order, you should regularly get it serviced.

Step 1: Turn Off the Power to the Unit

When cleaning your device, check and ensure there’s no electricity that can shock you running through your unit. This may be accomplished by either removing the breaker or turning off the switch. If you believe turning off the electricity to the air conditioner condenser at the main electrical panel is too difficult, you may alternatively turn off the entire power at the main electrical panel for safety.

Step 2: Clean up the Area Surrounding the Device and Remove Any Debris

Most of the dirt will become lodged on the fins, which must be gently wiped away. To remove the dirt that’s simple to dislodge, you should use a rough paintbrush. After that, you may use a vacuum cleaner with its brush attachment and clear up any finer particles. You must also keep the space around the condenser clear of plant growth and other things.

Step 3: Cleaning and Straightening the Fins

Fins may acquire a lot of crud and debris that’s difficult to remove with a brush. Instead, try scraping any stuck-on material between the fins with an old dinner knife and reshaping any bent fins. The best method to clean fins is by spraying them with cold water. You can do this using your normal garden hose, spray nozzle, or spray bottle if you don’t have one of the first two options. 

This eliminates lots of filth that wouldn’t have come out with other procedures. It’s important to avoid getting liquids on any electrical motors. If your fan motor doesn’t have sealed bearings, you should also check the lubrication of your fans. A few drops of electric motor oil should be enough, but don’t use other oils.

Step 4: Cleaning Your Condenser Fan

This is also an area where a lot of dust and debris may build up over time, so you should clean it regularly. There’s a potential that leaves will become trapped here as well. Wiping it down with a moist towel and letting it dry in the sun is the easiest method to clean it.

Cleaning Your Internal Unit

The air is heated or cooled by the evaporator unit inside the building. It works simultaneously and in unison with the AC or heating system to keep the inside at a comfortable temperature. Over time, evaporator coils grow dirty, slowing down the rate at which your house cools or heats. To guarantee that efficiency doesn’t diminish, you must clean these devices regularly.

Step 1: Cleaning Your Evaporator Coil

The evaporator coil door is often located within the blower/furnace unit, and it collects a lot of dust and debris. First, dust the coil with a soft brush and then spray it with a no-rinse coil cleaning. This liquid will help remove deposits and other junk from the coil, improving its efficiency. To get rid of the dirt between the coils, you may also use mild detergents and water.

Step 2: Cleaning Your Evaporator Drain

The evaporator drain might become clogged owing to algae and mold growth, and you must disconnect it. A clogged drain can create flooding, which can damage the floor, or, if the unit is fitted with a drain float, it can cause the device to stop working until the water is emptied. A foul stench may also arise from the device due to clogging. 

The drain pipe is commonly an inch-wide PVC pipe that drains near the condenser unit either inside or outside (sink or utility drain). To clean dirt from the evaporator drain, use a wet and dry vacuum cleaner.

Step 3: Changing the Blower Filters

You may need to change your blower filter more often, depending on your surrounding environment and where you live. You must change filters more often in dusty settings. You should replace the blower filter in your HVAC system at least twice a year. Ideally, this should happen before the “heating” season and right before the “cooling” season. 

It’s important to note that the airflow rating of the old filter and the replacement filter element should be the same. The filter is normally located at the end of the fresh air return duct in an enclosure. It’s easy to take something out of the container.

Step 4: Turning the Power Back On

If you’ve followed the instructions above, your HVAC unit should now be clean and run more effectively. You can now switch the electricity to your unit back on and check that everything operates properly. Keep an eye out for smoke, strange sounds, or bad odors as these indicate that something is wrong, and you may need to call a technician.

You’re Done!

HVAC preventive maintenance is the process of giving your system adequate care at regular intervals to prevent or reduce the likelihood of worse issues in the long term. People need to realize that routine AC maintenance and services are just as crucial for HVAC systems as they’re for cars. Regular inspections may help keep your HVAC systems running like new, much like a $30 oil change can preserve a $3,000 engine. 

Regular HVAC maintenance can save you a lot of money, especially when it comes to HVAC systems, which have a lot longer runtime than a typical building system. A well-maintained HVAC system may last over a decade before significant components need to be replaced.

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