Fall is quickly approaching and winter will be here before you know it. While you may still be using your air conditioner, it's important to think about prepping your home's HVAC system for the fall/winter season so you aren't without heat when the temperature takes a sudden turn. See below for some maintenance tips for the fall season.
Clean The Area Around Your Air Conditioner
Although you've been using your air conditioner all summer long, you may have actually been neglecting it a bit while you've been busy actually enjoying the warm weather. Take a look around the air conditioner and clean up debris sitting too closely to the exterior unit, remove weeds, and trim flowers, bushes and other landscaping that has overgrown too closely to the unit. You need to keep a clear perimeter around the condensing unit to allow proper air flow. Without air flow to your system, it can cause a system breakdown.
Clean The Condensing Unit
The condensing unit itself should also be cleaned to remove grass clippings, dust, dirt and other debris from the unit. This can also block air flow, which will eventually choke your system and breakdown. Spray it down with a garden hose, then turn off the power, and open the lid to spray it from the inside out.
Change The Filter
You should be changing your air filter every other month, or every month if needed. If you haven't done it in awhile, or can't remember the last time you changed it, now is a good time. You can find replacement filters at your local hardware store or big box store in your neighborhood. Make sure to replace it with one that is the same size.
Test Your Furnace
Even though the temperature outside may not require you to use your furnace just yet, you want to be prepared for that time when you will need it. Turn the thermostat to heat, then adjust the temperature to be sure your furnace kicks on. If it doesn't turn on, continue to adjust the temperature until it does. If it still doesn't turn on, you may have an issue. It's best to find out that you have a problem before you really need your furnace, and have to wait for a service technician to come out to your house. In the event your furnace doesn't turn on, contact a professional HVAC tech for help.
Just because the temperature hasn't changed just yet, it's best to be proactive and perform some maintenance before it's too late in the season and you're stuck without heat. Call a professional heating and air company to have your system tested and for a tune-up to save you from being left in the cold later on.