5 Summer HVAC Maintenance Tips
Temperatures are on the rise! That means the air conditioners across our state are being kicked into high gear. The last thing you want on a hot summer day is to come inside hoping for some relief, only to find your air conditioner stopped working. And let’s be honest, here in Milwaukie our air conditioning units are made for 90 degree weather, not 100 degrees! So also keep in mind, if it’s 100 degrees outside, expect the temperature inside to hover around 80, even with the best HVAC units installed. We like to remind folks to keep their blinds drawn on hot days, and switch up your ceiling fans to run counter clockwise to push that cool air down.
If you’re concerned about your system, first check out these 5 easy summer HVAC tips you can do yourself. If you get through this checklist and still find yourself sweating, give us a call! We’ll make sure you have smooth, cool sailing all summer long.
Replace the Air Filter
Chances are you didn’t change the filter at the end of last summer, so now is the perfect time to check it out and replace it if needed. If you are using a 1” or 2” thick filter, we recommend you replace your air filter every 1-3 months, other filters need replacing every 6-12 months depending on how often your cooling system is used.
Clean the Condenser Unit
Your outdoor condenser unit may have been ignored most of fall, winter and spring- left in the elements to gather falling leaves, sticks, and other debris. Cut back any overgrown bushes, remove debris from the unit, and give it a good spray down with your garden hose if needed. Springtime cottonwood blooms can clog up the outdoor unit, preventing airflow and efficient operation, best to call in the professionals as we can clean the condenser more thoroughly for better performance.
Check Drain Hoses
Check your drain hoses to make sure water is flowing freely and the hoses are not pinched causing any water to back up. We see this often when things get moved around in the basement throughout the year. If your home isn’t cooling as quickly or efficiently as you’d like, this could be an easy fix!
Check the Thermostat
Check the batteries in your thermostat and make sure your temperatures are reset for summer. We suggest you avoid extreme temperature recovery as the temperatures and humidity rise- reduce the difference in your set temps for Sleep/Away vs. Wake/Home – the larger the difference, the harder the unit will need to work to recover. Many homeowners have already made the switch to a programmable thermostat, which is a great way to control your cooling equipment and save on energy costs. If you haven’t invested in this yet, put it on your list to consider.
Open the Vents
The final piece of the puzzle lies within your home. Furniture, rugs, and general everyday life can cause the registers and vents in your home to become closed. If they’re on the ground, make sure they’re not covered with a rug or closed due to the vacuum cleaner running over them. If they’re on the wall or ceilings, make sure you keep doors to each room open. Contrary to popular belief, closing off rooms actually does more harm than good for your whole home cooling! The HVAC system is meant to work throughout your home, so keep the air flowing!
Easy maintenance can usually keep things running smoothly. But if you find there’s something bigger going on with your unit, and these simple fixes don’t do the trick- the experienced technicians at Gross Heating & Air Conditioning are ready and willing to come out to your home and check on your system. This is also a great time to learn more about whole home dehumidifiers, which make a huge difference in comfort level! Contact us today to request an appointment. Happy Summer!