Don’t Neglect Your Air Conditioner this Winter

As the sudden chill of autumn begins to float through the air, you know winter will arrive soon. Now’s the time to take a few moments to prepare your air conditioner for the off-season. Shutting down your AC as summer drifts away guards it against extreme winter weather that could reduce its life. A few basic steps are all it takes to prime your air conditioner for optimum efficiency come spring.

Deep Clean Your Air Conditioner

As the seasons change, your outdoor AC unit often can become filled with fallen leaves and pine cones. This is a handy time to wear your work gloves, clear away this debris and gently hose down the outdoor condensing unit. Ensure the outside temperature is well above freezing before using the garden hose to clean out the unit. Then, get rid of any particularly uncooperative leaves or twigs that remain stuck in the nooks and crannies and perform a final sweep around the unit. This helps prevent winter winds from blowing debris back into or underneath your air conditioning system.

Maintain the AC Unit

If you overlooked hiring an HVAC specialist to conduct regular air conditioning maintenance last spring, it’s still not too late! Arrange to have a certified technician conduct an AC tune-up before it becomes too cold outside. This tune-up and inspection includes checking the refrigerant level and testing for leaks, looking over and tightening electrical connections, lubricating moving elements and testing the system safety controls, among other tasks. Scheduled air conditioner maintenance improves efficiency, extends your unit’s life span and can find minor issues before they escalate into expensive problems.

Disconnect Your Air Conditioner

When you’re positive you have used your AC for the last time during the hot summer months, locate the condensing unit’s outside power switch. Open up the protective covering, flip the switch off and put the lid back down. This simple move protects you from accidentally turning on the air conditioner during the winter months. Accidentally turning on the air conditioner when the condensing unit is covered with ice could cause irreparable damage.

Examine the Exterior Unit

Turning off yourair conditioner after the cooling season calls for more than just flicking off a switch. It’s also important to scrutinize the outdoor unit’s condition. Watch out for cracks, dents, rust or other external issues. Make sure that all seals and insulation are secure and everything seems in order. If you identify a problem, call a professional to service the air conditioner before the issue becomes an even bigger problem. This prompt action helps you steer clear of unpleasant surprises when you power on your AC after its long winter hibernation.

Guard Your Air Conditioner Against Falling Ice

While some homeowners cover their outdoor air conditioning units with a tarp or a commercially available AC cover, this technique often creates more problems than it solves. Moisture can condense on the unit through the plastic, preventing evaporation and fostering rust or mold development. Mice might even view your covered AC unit as a lovely spot to build a winter den, and also gnaw through essential wiring and create an unwelcome repair bill in the spring.

Despite all this, safeguarding your AC from falling icicles is still key to preventing internal damage. The best compromise is to shield the top of the air conditioner with plywood weighed down with a brick or large rock to make sure the wind doesn’t blow the wood off. Leaving the air conditioning unit’s sides open to the winter snows should not cause any problems.

Routinely Inspect the Unit

Once your outdoor AC unit is correctly winterized, you can’t simply forget about your cooling system until you need it next spring. To ensure it stays in good shape, look at your AC about every week or so. Adjust the plywood if required and get rid of any leaves or pine needles stuck in the condensing unit. Normal winter care helps protect against any nasty predicaments come spring.

Schedule Air Conditioning Service Today in the U.S.

Preparing your air conditioning unit for cold temperatures may not be the most glamorous task, but the benefits are immense. Not only does it reduce the chances of pricey repairs and delays when you are looking to enjoy the air conditioning next spring, but it also encourages your unit’s efficiency and length of service.

For trustworthy, experienced assistance with the air conditioning tasks outlined above, reach out to Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Our team provides superb service to help our customers avoid HVAC issues all year-round. With Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing by your side, you’ll enjoy the satisfaction of knowing your home comfort is in skilled hands. To schedule an AC repair or maintenance visit, reach out to Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing today by calling 866-397-3787. Always remember, taking care of your air conditioner today makes for a cooler, more comfortable tomorrow!

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