When Should You Schedule an Air Conditioner Checkup?

Whether you live in a region that is beset by extreme summer temperatures and you’re trying to beat triple-digit heat or you happen to prefer having a home interior that is chilly as an icebox year-round, you likely rely heavily on your AC unit to pump out cool air on demand. But if you want to ensure peak performance and energy efficiency, you really need to schedule seasonal service calls so that a trained and qualified HVAC technician can clean, inspect, and repair your unit. The question most homeowners have is when to schedule such checkups. Here are a few general guidelines that should help you to determine if a visit from your HVAC technician is necessary.

For starters, it’s a good idea to get on board with an annual maintenance plan for your entire HVAC system. This will generally involve two visits each year; one in the fall that focuses on your heating elements (your furnace, boiler, or other heating equipment) and one in the spring to address your air conditioning unit. When you find an HVAC service provider you like and begin contracting with them regularly, your technician (or a representative) will call you during the appropriate season to schedule a visit. Otherwise, you can call to schedule it yourself in the spring. You want to do it before summer temperatures set in and technicians are busy dealing with emergencies brought on by seasonal weather patterns.

That said, you might also need to schedule off-season checkups if you’re experiencing a variety of issues with your home cooling system. One of the most common problems homeowners deal with is lack of air flow. And this can be related to either your AC unit itself or the ductwork that transports cold air into your living spaces. In some cases, you’ll need to replace a filter, clean the coils, or recharge the refrigerant in your unit.

But if you have ongoing problems in this area, it could be that your ducts aren’t set up correctly, in which case dampers may need to be adjusted or you might want to consider a zoning system that lets you send different intensity of cooling to different areas of the house based on need. But you won’t know until you call out your HVAC technician. This professional can also help you to deal with efficiency problems should you notice that your utility bill seems to be on the rise, potentially signaling performance issues. And of course, if your unit completely stops working, you’ll need professional help to diagnose and treat the problem.

You should also schedule a checkup if you encounter issues you can’t deal with on your own. Many homeowners feel comfortable with simple tasks like replacing filters and cleaning dirt and debris out of their AC units, but if you notice damaged coils, leaks, or other issues that could become major expenses if not dealt with promptly, it’s in your best interest to call for an immediate checkup to assess damage and perform repairs. Your HVAC maintenance plan is a good place to start when it comes to keeping your AC unit in shipshape and delivering cool air on demand. But don’t hesitate to call your technician for off-season checkups any time you feel there could be something wrong with your air conditioner.

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  1. What Causes a Home AC System to Freeze?
  2. How to Stop and Prevent HVAC System Leaks
  3. How Do You Know If Your AC Filters Are Clogged?
  4. Common Reasons Your AC System Makes Odd Sounds
  5. Common Home Heating and Cooling Mistakes You Might Be Guilty Of
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