Once the summer temperatures arrive here in the greater Pittsburgh area, you are going to want your air conditioner working like the 1976 Steelers: fast, efficient, and darned cool. Here is the step-by-step guide to getting your cooling system taped up, stretched, and ready for a starting position on your home comfort team.
Step 1: Replace Your Air Filters
This first step is especially important when switching between heating and cooling seasons. Through the long winter we just experienced, spending more time indoors, and working, learning, and relaxing in our homes, your central heating and cooling system’s air filters have likely built up dust, dirt, pet dander/hair, smoke particles, and more.
These filters should be replaced at least every 60 days, and in many cases much sooner— all depending on your manufacturer’s specifications.
Do you use a heat pump or ductless mini split?
Cleaning your heat pump or ductless mini split’s filter is a DIY maintenance task that should also be done as the seasons change. To clean your heat pump’s air filter, lift the front panel of your heat pump to expose the plastic air filter and metal screen. Wash it with warm water in your sink, removing all dust buildup. Allow the filter to dry, replace it, and you are good to go!
Step 2: Clear the Debris From Your Outside Compressor
In order to prevent any foliage, garbage, or live plantlife from causing damage to your AC unit, make sure to inspect and clear your outside compressor units of any debris. Best practice is to leave at least 18” of clear space for your compressor and blower fan to operate safely. This should include trimming any trees, bushes, or flowers that may have overgrown.
Step 3: Inspect Your Thermostat
Was your thermostat working correctly through the winter? Now is the time to ensure that when you turn your thermostat to “cool”, your AC actually turns on. If your thermostat is battery powered, now is the time to replace the batteries. If the temperature reading on your thermostat is not matching what you are feeling in your home, or if you have been having issues with controlling your home comfort, now is the time to upgrade to a smart or programmable thermostat. This ensures maximum comfort and energy savings as the cooling season ramps up.
Step 4: Schedule Professional HVAC Maintenance
The next step in ensuring the efficiency of your cooling system is to schedule professional maintenance. With a Calfo Check-Up or Tune-Up, you can get peace of mind knowing your air conditioner is ready for whatever awaits this coming summer. Both our premium 58-point Tune-Up, and our base level 21-point Check-Up include inspection measures like:
- Safety checks to ensure proper operation
- Checks for leaks and inefficiencies
- Tightening of any screws, bolts, or belts
- Lubrication of moving parts to increase efficiency
- Identifying worn parts that could lead to an AC breakdown
We recommend scheduling AC maintenance twice a year, once at the beginning of the cooling season and once at the end of the summer.