A tool bag is sitting on top of an air conditioner, with the words how to maintain air conditioner.

It’s miserable coming home from a long day at work only to find that your air conditioning unit isn’t working properly. Common causes of a malfunctioning or broken air conditioner – such as low refrigerant, poor electrical connections, or dirty evaporator coils – can all be avoided with regular maintenance. Not only will routine maintenance help ensure that your air conditioning unit can effectively keep your home cool but it will also help you save money by reducing energy costs. Here are some tips on how to maintain your air conditioner:

Refrigerant Recharge/Refill

Refrigerant is a chemical that is required for your unit to provide your home with cool air. As air from the home is circulated throughout your unit, it passes through the evaporator coils which carry the refrigerant. The warm air causes the refrigerant to evaporate, cooling the air down, and the cool air is then blown back out into your home.

When the refrigerant in your air conditioner is running low, the air doesn’t cool down as quickly, forcing your unit to continuously circulate the air in order to achieve the required result. This endless cycle causes your unit to work harder and raises your electric bill. It can also cause some other problems – such as a blower malfunction – due to the increased strain.

Blower Maintenance

The blower works hard to ensure that the air is effectively circulated throughout your air conditioning unit and into your home. Over time, the pressure on the blower causes it to wear down. If the blower malfunctions, the whole unit will shut down and leave your home feeling like a sauna. A routine check-up can help you notice the signs of a malfunctioning blower early so that you can replace it before it breaks down.

Evaporator Coil Cleanings

Evaporator coils circulate refrigerant throughout your air conditioning unit. Over time, the coils naturally become dirty due to excess refrigerant and dust carried in from the outside air. As a result, the evaporation process slows down, thus forcing your unit to work harder and your energy bills to rise. During routine maintenance, you should check to see if your coils could use a cleaning. At the same time, you should also check for signs of damage or leaks within the coils. If you find a leak, you may need to patch it or replace your coils entirely.

Electrical Connection Tests

The electrical components of your unit can become damaged or even dislodged over time. It’s extremely important to ensure that all wires, plugs, and other electrical components are working properly in order to reduce the risk of a fire. You should also test the connection between your thermostat and air conditioning unit to ensure that it’s working properly. A malfunctioning thermostat is a common cause of air conditioning systems not working properly.

Air Conditioning Unit Cleanings

Another key component of maintenance for your air conditioning unit is regular cleanings. A clogged outdoor unit can decrease the life-span of your unit by forcing it to work harder. Twigs, weeds, and leaves can become lodged into the vents, restricting the air-flow to your unit. Your unit can break down if this problem isn’t resolved quickly.

Air Filter Replacements

It’s recommended for most homes that you replace the air filter every three months. If you have pets, you should increase the frequency to every two months because pet dander clogs up filters fairly quickly. Changing your air filter will increase the quality of the air you breathe within your home by removing allergens and harmful bacteria, such as radon. This not only keeps your lungs happy but it also improves the overall health of your household.

A yearly check-up and proper cleaning of your air conditioning unit can help you keep your house from becoming dangerously hot during the summer. If you’re unsure of how to properly maintain your outdoor unit or you want a team of specialists who can help keep your unit running smoothly, contact Comfort Master Heating & Air Conditioning. We have been serving the Fort Worth area for several years, and our experts have a keen eye for spotting potential problems with your air conditioner. With our expert knowledge, we can reinforce your unit and help keep your home and family cool all year long.