Call us now ! Send us an email MOUNTAIN VIEW AVE. Santa Rosa United States

Back to Top

Call us today!

4 Mistakes You Might Be Making With Your Air Conditioner

Air Conditioner
Air conditioners can last as long as 15 years, if they get proper care. However, many homeowners ignore HVAC maintenance best practices, which can lead to a premature break down of their air conditioning unit. Below are four common mistakes that homeowners make when caring for their HVAC system.

1. Failing to Protect and Clean the Condenser

The condenser is the part of the air conditioner responsible for cooling the air in your home. The condenser works by moving hot air from inside to outside, where the heat is blown out into your yard. 

The condenser has a big job to do, and that job gets harder if the parts inside the condenser become gummed up with dirt or debris. You can ease some of the burden on your condenser by keeping its parts clean and ensuring proper air flow to the unit. 

To clean the condenser, cut the power to the unit and remove the cap. Use a shop vacuum to suck leaves and other dry debris out of the condenser, then spray inside the unit with a garden hose. 

If the fins on the outside of the condenser become bent or stuffed with leaves and debris, use a fin comb (found in hardware stores) to clean it. If the debris inside the condenser becomes thick and difficult to remove, use coil cleaner and a soft bristle brush to remove the worst of the mess.

2. Restricting Air Flow to Condenser

Just as debris inside the condenser can make the air conditioner's overall job more difficult, anything outside the unit that restricts air flow will have the same effect. If you've recently placed a privacy fence or a wall around your air conditioner condenser, you could be making the condenser's job that much more difficult. 

Maintain good air flow around the condenser by keeping weeds, shrubs, and fences at least two feet away from the condenser at all times. If you must put a fence around your condenser, make it a chain link fence to promote good air flow.  

Avoid planting shrubs or trees that lose their leaves in the immediate area around the condenser. Avoid using wooden mulch or small gravel mulch around the condenser as well. If you wish to mulch the area, use large rocks that are unlikely to become stuck in the condenser.

3. Failing to Change the Filter

You may not be aware, but your HVAC system comes with a filter that cleans the air. A dirty air filter can affect the overall efficiency of the system. If you fail to change the filter, it will become so dirty that the system must work very hard to pump air through the ducts. The air conditioner will also have to work longer to cool your home. 

Changing the air filter is easy. If you've never done it before, now is the time to start. Remove the old filter and find an identical product that can replace it. Filters can be found at hardware stores. Once you have a new air filter, insert it into the same slot where the old air filter was located.

Clean your filter every month or two, depending on how quickly it gets dirty. If you have pets, you may need to do it more often.  

4. Failing to Get a Tune Up

Your air conditioner may be newly installed, but you’ll still want to get an HVAC tune up annually starting one year after the air conditioner's installation. Your HVAC professional will check the parts, clean anything that's dirty, and make recommendations for repair if needed. Failure to get a tune up could result in a broken or poorly functioning air conditioner. 

Contact your HVAC professional. At Action Plumbing & Heating Maintenance, we're happy to help homeowners take care of their air conditioner. Call us today for more information.