Preparing your air conditioner for the long winter in Santa Rosa can help you maintain your HVAC unit’s efficiency and improve its performance throughout the cooling season. These tips will help you protect your air conditioner from debris that can cause problems with the functionality of your air conditioner.
Air conditioner condensers rely on air flow in order to function efficiently. Organic material that builds up in the condenser and around the coils can block airflow and impede your condenser's ability to do its job during the cooling season.
Cleaning the condenser at the end of the summer can help. To clean your air conditioner condenser, start by cutting the power to the unit. Next, use screwdrivers to remove the grate over the top of the condenser.
With a wet/dry vacuum, remove leaves and dirt inside the unit. When the condenser is completely clear, turn on a hose, then flush out the remaining debris with a strong spray of water.
If the coils are dirty, scrub them with a soft-bristled brush and coil cleaner. When you're done, rinse the cleaner off with water from the hose. Put the cover back on the condenser and restore power to the unit.
Don't Cover Your Air Conditioner
Santa Rosa gets around 32 inches of rain each year, and the vast majority of that rain falls in the months of late fall, winter and early spring. Residents of the community may wonder whether they should cover their condenser during this time to protect their cooling system.
Air conditioners are made to withstand a variety of harsh conditions, from rain to ice and snow. Covering the condenser only traps moisture around the unit and increases the likelihood of rust developing.
In parts of the country where a lot of snow and ice is common, some homeowners lay plywood over their air conditioners to provide protection from falling icicles. As a general rule, Santa Rosa doesn't usually get snow, so you don't need to cover the condenser at all.
Remove Weeds and Debris
One of the best ways to keep your air conditioner condenser clean is to remove weeds and debris from the area around the condenser. If your condenser is located in a garden bed, clear away all dead plants leftover from the growing season.
Rake up any fallen leaves and keep them away from the condenser. Pull weeds that might be growing near the condenser.
Use rock mulch to keep the area around the condenser clear of weeds. Avoid using lightweight mulch like bark or wood chips too close to your air conditioner because these materials can blow into your condenser and become trapped.
Change the Air Filter
Your HVAC system has one air filter, located in the area between the blower and the return air duct near the furnace. The air filter cleans the air every time you use your HVAC system, including your air conditioner. According to the ENERGY STAR program, you should change your HVAC system's air filter every three months to keep it functioning at optimal condition.
To change the air filter, start by turning off the HVAC system. Remove the filter. Use the old filter to find an identical filter at a home improvement store. At home, put the new filter back in the slot and turn the HVAC system back on.
Contact Action Heating & Plumbing for More Information
As your HVAC repair company in Santa Rosa, Action Heating & Plumbing is happy to answer any questions you might have about maintaining your air conditioner throughout the winter. To find out more about A/C maintenance, contact us today.