A question that often comes up among homeowners looking to save money is, “can’t I just handle air conditioning maintenance on my own?”
The truth is, you could probably find a video online of how to DIY inspect your air conditioner. But the real question is, do you really want to? If something gets missed, you could end up with an unexpected and expensive repair need, or maybe even a sudden AC breakdown when you need your system the most.
Not to mention, professional air conditioning maintenance helps keep your manufacturer’s warranty current. This means that if you have a defect that causes an AC problem, the manufacturer will be held accountable for it, instead of it coming out of your pocket. If you try to repair or maintain your AC on your own, however, it voids the warranty.
Okay, so, aside from warranty protection, what’s so great about professional AC maintenance? Read on to learn what actually goes on during these sessions, and to get the answer to that very question.
What Actually Happens During HVAC Maintenance?
There are a variety of things that your professional HVAC technician will do during your AC maintenance appointment to ensure that the system is functioning as it should, and is set up to continue doing so for the months and even years to come.
Remember, too, that there is one maintenance task that you can (and should) do on your own. What’s this? Changing out your air filter every 1-3 months during periods of AC (and heater) use. This helps prevent airflow from being restricted and helps your air conditioner operate as effectively and powerfully as possible.
As for professional maintenance, here’s what we do:
We Inspect the System
During this inspection, we’ll look for any signs of wear and tear. By alerting you to these issues right away, it gives you the opportunity to get repairs on your schedule before you’re facing a sudden and unexpected breakdown. But, what do we actually check during this inspection?
We Check Electrical Components: The average homeowner usually isn’t going to notice an electrical problem or malfunction with their air conditioner, unless it very obviously won’t turn on, and no amount of resetting the circuit breaker helps.
We Check the Thermostat: Your thermostat is the “brain” of your air conditioner, and if it’s not sending the right signal, this will cause discomfort and inefficient AC use. Not to mention, it will impact your heater functionality too if it’s on the same system.
We Check for Refrigerant Leaks: Refrigerant is not a “fuel” that gets used up. If your system is losing this chemical, it means you have a leak, and this leak could cause your air conditioner to stop functioning as it should.
We Clean Your Condensate Drain: Your air conditioner operates a bit as a natural dehumidifier, and so it needs to drain moisture. If the condensate drain gets clogged or damaged, it will create massive problems for your AC and for your home.
We Check the Capacitors: Your air conditioner relies on two capacitors, one to start up and one to run. These can wear down a fail long before the rest of the system, and so they should be checked for functionality on a routine basis.