It may still be winter at the moment, but it is never too early to start getting your air conditioning system ready for the warmer weather. To make certain that your air conditioner will run smoothly once spring arrives, there are a few maintenance tasks that you need to perform. The sooner that you perform these tasks, the better off your unit will be.
Step #1: Clean Your Exterior Unit
Due to strong winds, falling leaves, snow, and ice, the unit outside of your home will likely require some cleaning by the end of the winter season. Use a broom to remove as much of the debris as possible. If any grime remains, use the brush attachment of a vacuum to remove it.
Step #2: Check the Air Filter
This is probably the easiest maintenance task that you can perform on your own. It is also one of the most beneficial maintenance tasks that can be performed in regards to the efficiency of your air conditioning unit.
Ideally, filters should be changed or cleaned every three months at a minimum, though yours may need to be done sooner depending on your individual living situation and/or the unit itself. Regardless, though, the air filter should always be changed or cleaned at the beginning of the season to ensure you are starting fresh.
Step #3: Schedule Necessary Repairs ASAP
As soon as you have cleaned the unit and replaced/cleaned the filter, you need to inspect the unit as well as you can. If you notice anything out of place—misaligned, loose, or damaged in any way—make sure to put a call into an AC service for repairs or replacement as soon as possible.
Step #4: Clean the Vent Grilles
While the air filters can collect a lot of dust, dirt, and debris, the vent grilles can also get pretty dirty. You can use a cloth to wipe these down, but the quickest and most effective way to ensure that you remove all the accumulated debris is to use the brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner.
Step #5: Schedule a Tune-up with a Professional
Your HVAC system went through a lot over the winter to keep your home at comfortable levels, so it probably needs a professional tune-up before it has to go through it all over again, except this time it will be keeping you cool instead of warm. Don't assume that just because your unit seems to be working fine that it doesn't need a tune-up, as it is always better to be safe than sorry.