Dont Neglect Your Air Conditioner this Winter

As the crisp chill of autumn begins to flow through the air, you know winter will arrive soon. Now’s the time to stop and dedicate a few moments to prepare your AC for the off-season. Shutting down your AC as summer winds down guards it against extreme winter weather that could shorten its lifespan. A few basic steps are all you will need to prime your air conditioner for maximum efficiency come spring.

Deep Clean Your Air Conditioner

As the seasons change, your outdoor AC unit becomes a landing spot for fallen leaves and pine cones. This is a handy time to don your work gloves, remove this debris and gently wash out the outdoor condensing unit. Make sure the outside temperature is well above freezing before using the garden hose to clean out the unit. Then, remove any stubborn leaves or twigs that remain nestled in the nooks and crannies and complete a final sweep around the unit. This helps protect against winter winds from sending debris back into or underneath your air conditioning system.

Maintain the AC Unit

If you missed scheduling seasonal air conditioning maintenance last spring, it’s still not too late! Arrange to have a professional 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, examining 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 looks for and fixes any minor issues before they escalate into expensive problems.

Disconnect Your Air Conditioner

When you’re confident43 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 straightforward move stops you from accidentally activating the air conditioner during the winter months. Accidentally turning on the air conditioner when the condensing unit is covered with ice may create permanent damage.

Examine the Exterior Unit

Powering down your air conditioner after the cooling season involves more than just flicking off a switch. It’s also a good time to take a good look at the outdoor unit’s condition. Look out for cracks, blemishes, rust or other visible issues. Make sure that all seals and insulation are secure and everything looks in order. If you spot any issues, call a certified specialist to service the air conditioner before the issue escalates. This preventive measure helps you reduce the chances of any unpleasant surprises when you turn on your air conditioner after its long winter hibernation.

Guard Your Air Conditioner Against Falling Ice

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

While a tarp probably isn't ideal, shielding your AC from falling icicles is still critical to preventing internal damage. The best compromise is to shield the top of the air conditioner with a piece of plywood weighed down with a brick or large rock to make certain the wind doesn’t blow the wood off. Leaving the air conditioning unit’s sides exposed to the winter storms should not cause any damage.

Routinely Inspect the Unit

Once your air conditioner is properly winterized, you can’t simply stop thinking about your cooling system until you need it next spring. To make certain it stays in good shape, take a peek at your AC about a few times each month. Adjust the plywood if needed and clean off any leaves or pine needles embedded in the condensing unit. Routine winter care helps protect against any nasty predicaments come spring.

Schedule Air Conditioning Service Today in Gainesville

Preparing your air conditioning unit for icy and snowy weather may not be the most glamorous task, but the benefits are significant. Not only does it prevent expensive repairs and delays when you are looking to enjoy the air conditioning next spring, but it also boosts your unit’s efficiency and longevity.

For dependable, experienced assistance with the air conditioning tasks outlined above, turn to Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning. Our team provides superb service to help our customers avoid HVAC issues all year-round. With Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning by your side, you’ll enjoy the peace of mind of understanding your home comfort is in professional hands. To schedule an AC repair or maintenance visit, call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning today by calling 352-414-4006. Keep in mind, taking care of your air conditioner today makes for a cooler, more comfortable tomorrow!

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