Don't Turn your AC on this Summer! (till you read this...)

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As the weather gets warmer, you will be increasingly tempted to turn on your central air conditioner in order to cool things down inside your house. But, before you hit that switch on your thermostat, follow these five steps to make sure that your AC unit is running efficiently.

1) Check your air filters and change them if needed. Air filters need to be changed on a regular basis, especially if you have pets, since their hair can become clogged in the spaces of the filter that air has to pass through. A dirty filter may also spew dust, hair and other debris out of the vents, thanks to the force of the air pressure that passes through it.

2) Clean the drain channels on the air conditioner. These drain channels can become clogged, just as your air filters can. Unfortunately, you cannot switch the drain channels out like you can a filter, so a stiff brush or other implement will have to be pushed around to clean them.

3) Clean both of the air conditioner condensing coils (interior and exterior). These coils attract dirt and debris, and must be cleaned in order for your air conditioner to be able to generate the cool air that it circulates throughout your house.

4) Check the levels of refrigerant. This is the most important step of them all. If you have too little refrigerant, your air conditioner will not be able to cool your house down properly. If you have too much (which can happen) it can do serious damage to the compressor motor that runs your air conditioner.

5) Make sure that all of your air conditioning vents inside the house aren’t blocked. This will prevent the air from flowing through as it should. Also, do not place anything that produces heat right near the thermostat. Lamps and other electronics can trick the temperature sensor inside the thermostat and fool it into thinking that it is warmer inside than it really is.

Refrigerant levels should always be checked by a professional, but if any of these steps sound like they are too much to handle, call up the pros at Air Care Heating and Air Conditioning.