Buying a first home is an accomplishment worthy of pride, especially in today's real estate market where home prices in many areas have soared to uncomfortable levels. Once the transaction has closed and the buyer has taken up residency in the home, taking steps to protect your investment by learning how to maintain the structure and systems of your new-to-you home, including the air conditioning system, is a good plan. First-time homeowners who are struggling with the thought of providing proactive maintenance for their home's air conditioning system can use the following information to get started on the right path.
Start with frequent filter changes
Your air conditioning system works hard to produce and move large quantities of cool air throughout the spring, summer, and early fall months. As part of the process, the cooled air must be forced through a filter that works to remove dust, allergens, and other materials from the air. If the filter is not changed frequently, it is likely to become clogged and ineffective. As the air conditioning system is forced to continue working with a clogged filter, it will need to work much harder to cool the living spaces of the home.
In addition to creating higher energy bills, homeowners who operate their AC system with a clogged filter may be allowing damage to occur that can result in expensive repair bills, a shorter lifespan for the AC system components, or both. Since each system is different and may be affected by unique issues such as age, climate, and component condition, homeowners may want to develop an optimal filter change schedule using input from a trusted air conditioning maintenance contractor.
Remember to keep outdoor components clean
The next air conditioning maintenance tip that new homeowners will want to pay attention to is the need to keep outdoor components clean and free of dust or debris. AC system components can quickly become clogged with grass clippings, leaves, dust, or other debris. In addition, birds, insects such as wasps or ants and chipmunks, and other small animals may attempt to build nests in the cases of the components. By taking a few minutes each month to brush or blow away dirt and debris, homeowners are helping reduce wear on their outdoor AC components and extend their useful lifespan.
Schedule regular professional maintenance
First-time homeowners should also make professional AC maintenance a part of their annual home maintenance routine. Air conditioning maintenance professionals can clean and adjust the system, check for leaks and replace the coolant, and document and address any signs of wear so that the homeowner is less likely to experience repair issues during the cooling season.