One of the most important things about being a homeowner is knowing how to maintain your property, so it doesn’t fall apart. Regular maintenance is the difference between old homes that look beautiful and gorgeous and ones that look creepy and worn down. Fortunately, air conditioning services aren’t too expensive and will be able to help you identify whether your AC unit has any problems at all.
This article will quickly look at how often you should get your AC serviced, as well as how you can make the air conditioning service last as long as possible throughout the year. This way, no issues will pop up out of nowhere before the year ends.
How Long Should You Wait to Get Your AC Serviced?
First things first, one of the main questions that homeowners have relates to how often they should get their AC system serviced. According to many experts, homeowners should try to get air conditioning services every year if possible. This is the most ideal schedule to prevent costly repairs and to keep the AC unit running efficiently.
With that said, this could vary by quite a bit. If you’re not someone who uses the AC system too frequently, and, by that, we mean that you only turn it on several times throughout the entire year, you might not need to get it serviced as frequently. You might be able to skip a year; however, don’t make the decision to skip a year by yourself. Ask the air conditioning service in Fort Worth, TX whether they would recommend this. If the HVAC company sees that your AC system is in great condition, they might tell you that it would be fine to do so.
What Does an AC Service Include?
Different HVAC companies will include different types of things in their air conditioning service plan. Get a good idea of what’s included first before you agree to anything. Some of the most common things that you can expect during the air conditioning service include:
- An overall inspection of the unit. The HVAC company will typically need to take the unit apart in order to get a good look at the components inside. Damages to these parts are the most difficult to find, and you’ll need an experienced eye to help you.
- Air filter and fin cleaning. The AC unit collects quite a lot of dirt and dust throughout the year, and a thorough cleaning will get rid of fungal growth as well as other pollutants. It’s important for those who struggle with any type of respiratory condition or disorder.
- AC condenser and evaporator coil cleaning. In particular, the HVAC technician will want to see whether the evaporator coil is frozen during the air conditioning service. This is an indication that there’s a refrigerant leak somewhere in the system.
- AC condenser and evaporator fan cleaning. This part of the AC system is also a great breeding ground for fungus.
- Drain cleaning and leakage check. This is quite easy, as the HVAC technician will see if they can visibly see any water leaks. They might also put their ears to the AC unit during the air conditioning service to see whether they hear any hissing or gurgling sounds. Both sounds are indications that there’s a leak. A hissing sound usually indicates that there’s a smaller leak.
- Coolant level and air check. When the coolant level is less than required, the AC unit will not run as efficiently.
Some HVAC companies may also offer more things in their air conditioning service plan in Fort Worth, TX. Once again, it’s important to discuss all of the details with the company before agreeing to anything. You should also consider getting quotes from several other companies in order to gauge whether you are getting a good deal or not. Compare the prices with not only what you get, but also the reputation of the company. To get a better understanding of the reputation of the company, look at reviews online.
8 Tips on How to Maintain Your AC System
In order to ensure that the air conditioning service in Fort Worth, TX lasts as long as possible and that your AC unit will not run into any troubles or problems before the summer ends, you should also do your part in maintaining the system as much as you can. Surprisingly, there are quite a few things that you can do.
#1. Turn Off the Unit When You Don’t Need It
When you leave your home or the room, turn off the AC unit. You don’t want it to continuously run even when there’s no one around because this will only add more strain and pressure to the unit.
This is also why it’s a good idea to get a smart thermostat upgrade. A smart thermostat will allow you to turn your AC system on or off with your phone. Even if you forget to turn off your AC unit before you leave your home, it’s not a problem at all.
#2. Keep It Clean
Vacuum the fins of the AC unit whenever you can. You might even notice that dirt and dust will begin to accumulate after several weeks. This is basically the same as cleaning your floors every week. If you add this to your schedule, you’ll notice that the effects of the air conditioning service will last a lot longer. When vacuuming the fins, make sure that you use a soft-bristle brush in order to ensure that you don’t damage anything, as the fins are quite fragile and can be easily bent or crushed with just a little bit of pressure.
#3. Fix a Sinking Pad
If you have concrete pads under the AC unit or heat exchange unit, you’ll want to fix sinking pads whenever you can. A sunk pad may begin to put strain and pressure on the copper coolant tubes and electrical lines inside. To check whether the pad has sunk, look at the ground and where the pad is located. When the pad sinks, you’ll also sometimes see water around the unit.
This can be a fairly difficult thing for some homeowners to inspect themselves. If you’re not sure whether the pad has sunk or not, speak with the HVAC technician during the air conditioning service. They should be able to inspect the pad for you and provide you with some further insight.
#4. Make Smart AC Upgrades
Another thing that you can do is to make smart AC upgrades. This includes things like switching to a smart thermostat or to a smart vent. Smart upgrades will make your AC system more compatible with other devices in your home. The smart upgrades will also improve the overall efficiency of the AC unit so that it uses up less energy when it is turned on. This also ensures that the air conditioning service lasts as long as possible.
#5. Add In-Line Duct Boosters
Although this is not applicable to all AC systems, you can consider installing an in-line duct booster if you have a forced-air AC cooling system. A booster fan can increase the airflow into a specific room, so the AC unit doesn’t need to run as hard in order to cool the room. There are two different types of boosters that you can purchase for an AC unit. They include an in-line duct or a vent and register booster fan. If you’re not sure which type is best suited for your home, speak with an HVAC technician.
#6. Add Shades or Blinds to Your Windows
Did you know that a surprising amount of heat can escape from or enter through your windows? On a particularly sunny day in Fort Worth, TX, the heat from the outdoors can easily dissipate inside your home. No matter how often you turn the AC on, it might still not be enough. In order to get the room temperature down to a more reasonable or comfortable level, the AC unit will need to work especially hard. This puts a tremendous amount of strain and pressure on all of the parts inside and will ensure that you’ll need to get more AC repairs in the future.
In order to ensure that your air conditioning service lasts as long as possible, install window accessories like shades and rollers. These window accessories will prevent heat from entering your home, so your AC system doesn’t have to work as hard. Fortunately, these window accessories come in many different styles and designs, and you can easily find something that will look good in the room. In fact, you can take advantage of these window accessories to really brighten up a room and make it fancier.
If you’re not a fan of shades or blinds, you might want to consider getting some type of window film or glazing installed over the windows. These films will not disrupt your view outside; however, it will be able to prevent a significant amount of heat and ultraviolet rays from entering your home. Depending on the type of film that you have installed, you might even be able to enjoy some added privacy.
#7. Fix the Fins
For some reason, it’s not unusual for the fins in your AC unit to become bent or crushed with time. Like we’ve mentioned above, these fins are really fragile, so just a little bit of pressure can easily bend them. Unfortunately, most air conditioning service plans will only clean the fins. They will not try to straighten them out again. You, however, can easily do this by yourself. You can use some type of flat tool, like a dinner knife, to gently ease the fins back into their rightful place and shape. This is quite an easy thing to do, and can substantially lower the amount of strain and pressure that is placed on the AC unit during operation.
#8. Make Sure There’s Enough Insulation
It’s crucial that the AC unit is properly insulated. If it isn’t, it might vibrate too much or it might lose a lot of energy depending on the external environment. The easiest thing that you can do is to add some extra insulation or to inspect the insulation for any signs of damage. If the insulation is peeling off or coming off in certain areas, you can ask a contractor to come to fix it for you.
Although the air conditioning service might check the condition of the insulation, they usually will not fix it for you if it looks like it’s a little bit damaged. Instead, most experts will recommend that you either call a contractor or do it yourself. Fortunately, you can easily purchase the materials that you need at a home renovation store. The instructions will be on the package, and this is usually something that you can do within a day. If you run into any problems, you can even find videos online!
Get Your AC Serviced As Soon as Possible!
Even with regular air conditioning services, it’s possible for your AC unit to run into problems before the year ends. This is especially true if you don’t constantly treat your AC unit with care, like turning it off when you leave the room.
Fortunately, if you keep up with annual air conditioning services, you can rest assured that your AC unit will have a relatively long life while still running as efficiently as possible. One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating of Fort Worth provides air conditioning services in Fort Worth, TX. We can help you keep your AC unit running as smoothly as possible, and can also point out any issues that should be addressed immediately during the service.
For more information, give us a call at 817-835-6016. We will take care of all of your air conditioning repair needs and can help you come up with a maintenance plan that works for you. Our HVAC technicians are available 24/7, so you can reach us whenever you need to.