Spring Cleaning Your Air Conditioning System

June 1, 2016

Spring has sprung! Here at Baker Brothers, we’re all about staying ahead of the game and helping you do the same.

With a weekend afternoon or two this spring, you can get your HVAC system ready for primetime. We also recommend you do the same for plumbing.

Why should you spring clean your HVAC system? So many reasons.

  1. Brownie points
  2. Maintenance is cheaper than repairs
  3. Failing to properly maintain your AC unit will void many warranties
  4. Poorly maintained HVAC systems can cost up to 30% more to run
  5. Clogged ducts will unevenly cool your home
  6. Dirt and debris in your HVAC system are common allergy culprits
  7. Because you don’t want your AC to go out during a Texas August

Now that you’re sold on spring cleaning your HVAC, here’s what we recommend:

Change your furnace filter if your unit is a combined furnace/AC system.

Consider getting your ductwork cleaned by professionals. Baker Brothers Plumbing and Air does not currently clean ductwork, but we strongly suggest you hire someone who does. In a few hours, they can remove tons of allergens from your home. Many of them even have cameras much like those we use for drain inspections.

Clean your AC unit. Yes, these puppies are made to sit outside and take beating from the elements, but they are NOT made to churn through debris, leaves, sticks, stones, children’s toys, etc. It’s a good idea to take a look inside at the fan and be sure the path is clear. If it’s not, use a leaf blower or power washer to clear it. Then, see if you can locate a drainage hole in the base of the cabinet, beneath the evaporator fins. Clear the hole of any debris with a paper clip.

Check your AC vents. This one might seem like a no-brainer, but many folks close off certain vents during the winter, and have different vent preferences for summer. Just a friendly reminder to go ahead and make sure they are open or closed as you prefer….you know, before you spend a few hundred dollars cranking the AC for weeks and wondering why the house is unevenly cooled.

Consider blocking some AC vents, for example, in basement that is already cool and is rarely used. Hardware stores sell magnetic vent covers that are just a few bucks and install in seconds.

Clean your bathroom fans. Turn the power off, then take the cover off and wash it in hot soapy water. While it soaks, clean dirt off the fan blades with a rag or an old toothbrush.

Inspect the caulking around windows and doors, inside and out, and remove and replace old caulk. Faulty old caulk can leak air in and out, and spring’s moderate temps are perfect conditions for caulking.

Consider new curtains. This isn’t directly HVAC-related, but black out curtains can block out both the sun and warm air, giving your AC system a break. It’s much easier for room to maintain it’s temp with curtains drawn—which means money savings! If you don’t want full blackout curtains for rooms you use frequently during the day, heavier curtains of any type will still help the cause.

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