In the Twin Cities, March might not look quite like spring, but before you know it, warmer weather will be right around the corner. That’s why now is an excellent time to ensure your air conditioner is in proper working order.

A/C cleaning, a thorough inspection, and parts maintenance are all critical steps in making sure your HVAC system is ready for summer. What steps do you need to take to get your system ready for the heat? The experts at Dust Doctors share a quick checklist below.

1. Double-Check Your Vents

If your vents appeared to be working properly while your furnace was operating throughout winter, chances are they’re still working fine. But it’s better to be safe than sorry, and this quick vent check-up will only take a few minutes to complete.

When it’s warm enough outdoors that you can handle a few minutes of cold air, crank up your air conditioner and double-check each vent in your house. Place your hand a couple of feet from the vent to see if it’s putting out an adequate amount of cold air. If any of the vents appear to have an issue, there may be a blockage or leak in your ductwork that’s preventing cool air from flowing through the system properly.

If something’s amiss, you’ll want to determine what’s going on as promptly as possible, so your HVAC system is ready to go for hot weather. Call a heating and cooling specialist who can take a look at the interior of your ducts to locate the source of the problem.

2. Clear Debris Around the Outdoor Unit

If your outdoor a/c unit is at ground level, a considerable amount of debris may have accumulated around the unit throughout autumn and winter. And as spring sets in, grass and weeds may pop up around the unit, too.

For optimal air conditioner performance, you’ll want to make sure there’s a clear, two-foot radius around the outdoor unit, so clean up any leaves, sticks, weeds, and grass that you find. When you mow your lawn throughout spring and summer, you’ll also want to clean up lawn clippings near the unit so they don’t get sucked into the a/c and accumulate around the fan.

Check out Dealing With Inefficient A/C Performance? How Duct & A/C Cleaning Helps to learn more about boosting your unit’s efficiency.

3. Schedule A/C Cleaning

If you have a central cooling system, you should be scheduling a/c cleaning and service annually. Dirty condenser and evaporator coils can decrease your unit’s efficiency by up to 30%, so keeping them clean will help control your energy bills.

While you can certainly attempt a/c cleaning on your own, hiring a professional is almost always a better option. The pros can alert you to potential parts issues you may not readily recognize, so you can have the appropriate air conditioner repairs performed on the spot.

Aside from having your unit cleaned as part of its standard spring maintenance routine, there are other indications that your unit may need professional service. Check out How to Determine When It’s time to Schedule A/C Cleaning for more information.

4. Replace Your Air Filters

You’ve been changing your HVAC filters throughout winter, right? If so, continue with your normal replacement schedule. If you’ve neglected filter replacements, though, there’s no time like the present to install a fresh filter.

Ideally, you should examine the filter(s) once a month to determine if replacement is necessary. Hold the filter up to the light and if you can’t see light pass through it, it’s time to change it out for a new one. Don’t allow the filter to sit for more than 90 days as debris accumulation can interfere with the cleanliness and efficiency of your cooling system.

5. Schedule Duct Cleaning

If you’ve never had your ductwork cleaned, spring is a great time to get it done as part of your normal spring cleaning routine. Duct cleaning not only ensures the interior of your air ducts are free of debris, but it also keeps particulate matter out of your indoor air and helps improve airflow through your HVAC system.

After your ducts have their first professional cleaning, you should schedule service every two to three years to prevent excessive buildup. Check out the many benefits of regular air duct cleaning for more information about why this service is so important for your home and your health.

6. Inspect Ducts for Damage

How did your furnace perform over the winter? Did you notice your energy bills seemed higher than normal? If so, your ductwork may be to blame. Even small cracks or holes in the ducts can allow plenty of conditioned air to escape. When air can escape the system, your cooling system must work longer and harder than necessary to keep your home at a constant temperature.

Typically, ductwork lasts for around 10-15 years, so if yours is reaching the end of its functional life, it may be time to consider having it replaced. If you’re looking to achieve maximum a/c efficiency this summer, replacing deteriorated ductwork can make a massive difference.

Need A/C Cleaning in the Twin Cities? Contact Dust Doctors

If you’re ready to get your a/c system prepared for the summer heat, get in touch with our team at Dust Doctors today. We specialize in a/c cleaning, repair, and comprehensive duct cleaning and serve homes throughout the Twin Cities metro. To learn more about our services, feel free to give us a call at 651-319-9777 or contact us online. You can also request a free quote if you’re ready to get started!

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