The desert gives homeowners a unique opportunity to bask in the beauty and quiet solitude of cacti, agave, and rugged terrain, but the desert makes a hard living for your air conditioner. Even so, frequent maintenance can keep your air conditioner running its best despite the harsh conditions. Much of the maintenance that your air conditioner requires can be easily completed by the average homeowner, though there are a few things that should be left to the experts.
The most important thing you can do for your air conditioner is to keep the filter clean! When your air filter clogs, it reduces air flow to your air handler, making it harder and harder for the air conditioner to cool your home. Check your filter at least once a month and change it any time it starts to look dirty. Investing in an electrostatic filter can save you hundreds of dollars in disposable filters. You can simply wash the filter’s dirt away rather than throwing another disposable filter in the trash.
A clean air filter not only promotes cooler air circulation in your home, it helps decrease airborne pollutants over time. Each time you change or clean your filter, you’re taking that much dust, pollen, dander and debris out of your house. If you keep your home closed up most of the time, your air will get cleaner with each successive filter change.
Depending on where your air conditioner’s condensing unit is located, you might want to hire help for outside maintenance. Outside units that are roof-mounted present a myriad of challenges that start with having to climb up and down a ladder. Both rooftop mounted units and ground installed units require basically the same care.
Start by examining the outside of your unit. Do you see a lot of bent fins, or debris clinging to the unit? A shopping bag caught in the breeze may find your air conditioner wildly attractive, or native plants may sprout nearby to take advantage of the little bit of condensation your unit may put off. Clear everything off of the outside of your unit, use a fin comb to straighten the fins out, and then grab your garden hose.
You should be thoroughly cleaning your condensing unit at least twice a year, more often if you live in an area with a lot of dust. With the power off, start by rinsing the unit, inside and out, then apply a more forceful spray to the fins to knock loosened dust away. Unclogging your unit this way allows it to more efficiently use its refrigerant, keeping your home cooler for less money.
Next, check the insulation on your coolant line. If it’s intact and fits well, there’s nothing else to do, but if it’s sagging, ripped, falling apart or otherwise tattered, replace it with a new section and tape the new insulation together firmly.
Your condensing unit is exposed to the elements constantly, so it definitely needs attention, but don’t neglect your air handler, either. Although cleaning the evaporator coil is a job best left to the professionals, the drain coming from the evaporator coil’s catch pan is a point of interest in your maintenance tour. This seemingly insignificant rubber or plastic line makes a huge difference to your comfort. When it’s blocked, water backs up and humidity builds.
You can prevent your drain from backing up or your evaporator coil’s catch pan from overflowing by cleaning out the drain line when you change your filter. Simply pull the line off the outlet coming from your air handler and run a thin, stiff brush inside to open up any clogs before pouring a vinegar or bleach solution through the line to kill algae and bacterial colonies. If your line is particularly difficult to access or remove, you may want to install a clean-out to make this chore much easier.
Air conditioning is vital to desert living — it’s important to maintain your system to get the most use from it for the least amount of energy. You should have your air conditioner professionally checked at least twice a year, but there’s a lot you can do yourself between those visits to keep it running smoothly..
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I wanted to make sure my air conditioner was ready for summer. Fernando came out and made sure my unit was tip top. He was friendly, professional and not a sales man. Thanks Fernando!
Colin and Andrea were incredibly professional and knowledgeable. They did a great job representing the company. We will definitely contact them again for any HVAC needs that arise.
We woke up in the middle of the nite on memorial day to a hot house. I called precision at 6am and they were here before noon. Simple problem fixed, cool house. I love these guys!
Thank you Ray at Precision Air...the compressor on our AC went out last night and the house was HOT. This morning Ray was there to replace the compressor and had us feeling the cool air again in no time. Great customer service...quick response time and friendly from the first call until the repair was completed. Ray even offered to clean the filters! Thank you!!
I’m so glad I called Precision for my annual AC checkup!! Austin was professional, super friendly and answered all my questions. I’ve had more bad experiences with AC companies here in the valley than good ones. Precision Air will have all my hvac business going forward!! Thanks for being a reputable and honest company!!!
He did a great job; professional and knowledgeable! Kalin is the technician’s name and Precision Air and Plumbing should take a bow for hiring such an invaluable employee!!!
Precision Air is a company of integrity. I signed up with them August 1st, 2019 for their AC maintenance plan for 2 years... Someone from their office called me a week ago to set up their yearly maintenance visit. SO GRATEFUL.
Precision Air and Plumbing is a wonderful company to work with! They are very experienced and professional. They have helped us in our home for many years via a/c service and air duct cleaning.
It was time to replace our AC, and so our choice was Precision Air, as we've been with them for over 20 years. Teman & Julian did an excellent job on the installation today, arriving on time.