You may have heard of a tune up for your car, but did you know that air conditioners also need to be regularly tuned up to keep them in good condition? Many people who own an AC only call their HVAC technician when something has gone wrong. But you can save yourself a lot of trouble (and money, too!) by being proactive about maintaining your system this year!
The Basics of AC Tune-Ups
When you need a repair, someone will come to your house, find the problem that’s keeping your AC from working, and then fix that specific issue. A tune-up is more comprehensive. It is done every year, even when there are no noticeable problems. During a tune-up, the technician will check the whole system, including your outdoor and indoor units. They are looking for safety problems like faulty wires, and normal wear and tear like loose screws. They may also lubricate moving parts to keep everything moving smoothly.
Cleaning is also vital. Dirt will get cleaned off of the outside coils and other components to keep the system from having to battle build-up while trying to keep your house cool.
The Benefits of AC Tune-Ups
It’s true that an annual AC tune up is another thing that you’ve got to put on your checklist for the year. When you’ve got other things to think about like dentist appointments and car repairs, even one more thing can seem like a lot. But compare that to how you’ll feel if your air conditioner breaks down during a heatwave and you’re left to suffer the heat while you scramble to have it repaired. Maintenance is always worth the trouble because you’ll get a lot back for a small effort. Here are just a few of the ways that getting maintenance will benefit you over your AC’s lifespan.
You’ll Enjoy Energy Savings
Sometimes, problems can sneak up on you. Your AC won’t always break down in one day, instantly leaving you without cooling. Instead, the only hints may be slightly warmer air coming from the vents, weaker air pressure, and rising energy costs. When the system is having to push through buildup or parts that are wearing out, it will have a hard time keeping up with the temperature on the thermostat, even when it runs for hours.
Your AC Will Have a Longer Life
If there are two cars of the same make, model, and year and one goes to someone particular about tune-ups, anyone might guess that it will last longer than the car that’s owned by someone that never takes it in. It’s easy to forget that principle when it comes to an air conditioner. When you take care of your AC, 10 years can turn into 15, and 15 can turn into 20 before you have to think about replacing it.
You’ll Cut Down on Frequency of Repairs
A lot can happen to your AC in just one year. Dirt and debris can collect on the system, friction can wear parts out, and some things can get loose just from constant motion. None of those are serious in the short term, but if you let them go too long, they can turn into breakdowns. When you are having your system regularly checked for loose screws, loss of lubrication, and a build-up of dust, you won’t have to call again during the summer to have those issues repaired.
Repairs Will Be Less Serious
Minor breakdowns can still happen, even with seasonal AC service, but unless your system is 15 years old, you won’t see any of the expensive breakdowns like a broken evaporator coil or condenser. By catching smaller problems early, you’ll avoid the domino effect that can happen when those little things aren’t attended to. You might even put off that replacement for a few more years.
You’ll Protect Your Warranty
It can be a nasty shock if you are expecting your system to still be under warranty, but you are told the repair isn’t covered because you didn’t schedule annual AC service. You can usually find that clause in the fine print of your warranty so read it carefully to see what kind of maintenance you need to invest in for your system.
Once you start maintaining your AC every year, you’ll wonder why you didn’t do it before! The air from your vents is going to be arctic and your house will stay comfortable all summer long without causing your energy bill to be higher than your mortgage. This year, it’s time to turn over a new leaf and treat your AC, and yourself, to an air conditioner tune up.