How to Maintain your Cooling System?
Published on Jan 08, 2014 by Coleman Levin
Without proper care and maintenance, cooling systems lose 5% of their efficiency every year. So its important particularly when coming into the hotter months to properly maintain your air conditioner yearly to help protect the system against wear and tear, improve performance and cut down energy costs.
It can also help to prolong the life of its parts and to prevent expensive and inconvenient breakdowns. Learning how to maintain cooling systems can improve its safety for your family and perform both economically and dependably for many years.
To ensure that your air conditioner is maintained correctly and performed regularly rely on an experienced and professional technician. For example, a Ducted Add On Cooling system maintenance checklist includes:
- Checking the coolant levels and pressure
- Checking the calibration of the thermostat and proper cycle and temperature
- Checking of wiring, capacitors, relays, and contacts - adjusting and tightening if necessary
- Checking the evaporator coil
- Checking if the condensate drain is clear
- Checking condenser and cleaning
- Checking of outdoor disconnection
- Checking the condenser fan motor and blades, and lubricating them if needed
- Checking the condenser amps at start-up
In addition to professional checks, there are some things that you can do to keep up the system’s regular maintenance such as replacing or cleaning air conditioner filters and coil fins to ensure its effectiveness and efficiency.
Air Conditioner Coils
The cooling system’s evaporator coil as well as the condenser coil can accumulate dirt, causing it to reduce air flow and insulate the coil leading to a reduction in its capability to absorb heat. A clean filter inhibits the evaporator coil from failing; check the evaporator coil every year.
The aluminium fins on evaporator and condenser coils are easily bent and can block airflow through the coil. You can ask your trusted technician about replacing your "fin comb" - this will comb these fins back into their original condition.
Periodically, pass a stiff wire through the unit's drain channels. Clogged drain channels avoid a unit from reducing moisture, and the resulting excess moisture may discolour walls or carpet.
Window Seals for Room Air Conditioners
In the beginning of the hotter months, check the seal between the air conditioner and the window frame to make sure it makes contact with the unit's metal case. Moisture can damage this seal consequently letting cool air escape from your house.
Preparing for winter
In the winter; either cover your room air conditioner or remove and store it. Covering the outdoor unit of a central air conditioner will protect the unit from winter weather and debris.
Hiring a technician
When your air conditioner needs more than its regular maintenance, hire a professional service technician. A well-trained technician will find and fix problems in your cooling system
The technician must:
- Check the right amount of refrigerant
- Test for refrigerant leaks
- Check for and seal duct leakage in central systems
- Measure airflow over the evaporator coil
- Monitor the right electric control sequence and ensure that the heating system and cooling system cannot function at the same time
- Check electric terminals, clean and tighten up connections, and apply a non-conductive coating, if required
- Check oil motors and belts for rigidity and wear
- Check the accuracy of the thermostat
Regular maintenance keeps your cooling system running as efficiently as possible and maintaining them can actually save you money by extending its life.