Come time to get a HVAC inspection, you want to have your air conditioning unit in the best condition that it can possibly be in. To accomplish this, every homeowner should keep their HVAC annually inspected and maintained in order for it to function efficiently. While an inspection performed by a trained professional would be recommended, homeowners can do a lot of the work themselves by following these steps, and in turn will make their HVAC system stand out on a HVAC inspection report.
HVAC Maintenance Step One: Clean the Exterior Condenser Unit and Components The exterior condenser unit is the large metal box on the side of the house. Inside the box are coils of pipe surrounded by thin metal fins. These fins allow the coils more surface area to exchange heat. After turning off power to the unit: .
- Start by cleaning debris off the unit’s exterior, such as leaves, grass and spider webs. Trim back foliage several feet to allow air to flow properly
- Then, remove the cover grille, and gently clean the interior.
- Next, straighten any fins that might be bent. Easier done with a tool called a fin comb.
- Checking the owner’s manual for specific instructions, add lubricating oil to the motor.
- Lastly, gently clean the evaporator coil and condenser coil.
HVAC Maintenance Step Two: Inspect the Condensate Drain Line Check the condensation pipe for any obstructions (algae, grass, leaves, etc.) This is found on every other HVAC inspection that I go on. You can avoid a clog condensate line by checking it after every time your yard is mowed. Movers have a tendency to shoot grass and dirt up in there. If the condensate drain line was attached to an air exchange in the attic, a backed up, clogged line could cause a drip pan to overflow, causing potential water damage to your home. Also, make sure the lines fit properly and are secured to the unit. While your there, make sure the lines drip far enough from the foundation. A foundation that stays constantly wet will deteriorate faster.
HVAC Maintenance Step Three: Clean the Air Filter The filter should be washed or replaced periodically, depending on manufacturer’s instructions. A dirty air filter will degrade air quality and strain the motor to work harder, which will increase energy costs and reduce energy efficiency. The indoor filters should be replaced monthly, especially during heavy use (Summertime).
Following these three easy steps will help your HVAC unit last longer. Saving you money from repairs that could have been avoided and lower energy bills. The big positive is that these steps will prolong having to drop a big wad of cash on a new air conditioning unit. Plus, if your house ever gets an HVAC inspection, a well cleaned and maintained HVAC unit is a great advantage to a home buyer and home seller.