The sun in shining and the days are getting longer which can only mean Summer is just around the corner! If you live in the Midwest, typically from mid-April to mid-May is a great time to turn on your air conditioner and check the AC unit in preparation for the warmer weather ahead.
Not sure when or how to turn on your air conditioner or need a reminder (since it’s been a good 6+ months)? Here are some steps on how to turn on and check your air conditioner to make sure it’s ready for summer!
1. Check Air Conditioner
First, turn off your HVAC system at your thermostat by switching your thermostat from heat/cool to OFF. Once the thermostat is set to off, go outside to inspect your unit. Make sure there are no sticks, leafs or debris built up on or around your unit. Also, check between the fins of your AC to see if there is any built up debris. Clearing away any debris from your unit will help with airflow and ensure your AC unit is working efficiently.
2. Change Filter
Changing your furnace filter is a must before AC season. Regularly changing your furnace filter (yes, even in the summer!) is very important to not only the health of your HVAC system, but it provides clean air for your home and prevents you from breathing in harmful pollutants. For more information about furnace filters and how to check/change a filter, check out our past blog post and video.
TIP: If you have a whole home humidifier, now is the time to change the setting from Winter to Summer!
3. Test Air Conditioner
It’s important to wait until the temperature outside is at least 60 degrees for a minimum of 48 hours. Chicago weather is very unpredictable, but generally a good time to test your AC is in the months of April or May.
It is important to test your air conditioner as soon as temps start warming up because if it’s not running correctly or cooling properly, you’ll have enough time to get it checked out or fixed, if needed.
To test your air conditioner, simply switch your thermostat from heat to cool. Next, set the temperature a 4 to 5 degrees lower. Your air conditioner should kick on within a few minutes.
4. Listen for Weird Noises
Once you’ve switched your thermostat to cool, and the air conditioner kicks on, listen for any weird noises. Noises such as banging, squeaking or scraping are indications of a problem. Bad airflow or a loose or broken motor could be the culprit. Its always best to get it checked out by a trained professional.
5. Check Vents
The first time you turn on your air conditioner is a good time to double check all your vents to make sure they are uncovered, open and nothing is blocking air from coming out. Floor vents easily get covered by furniture and rugs or are accidentally closed or blocked (maybe by a toddler finding a good hiding place for their cheerios…been there!).
6. Schedule a Tune Up
Scheduling routine air conditioning maintenance, at least once a year, will increase the life of your HVAC system, minimize the cost of repairs, and ensure your equipment is running properly and efficiently.
If you have any questions about prepping your air conditioner for summer or would like to schedule an AC precision tune up, give us a call at On the Mark Heating & Air or make an appointment today!