Five Ways To Get Your Air Conditioner Ready For The Fall 

Five Ways To Get Your Air Conditioner Ready For The FallYou may not think much about your AC after Labor Day. But, before you fire up your heater, give your cooling system a little extra care. That way, you’re all set for the following year. Five great ways to get your air conditioner for the fall are: 

  • Clean Around The Outdoor Unit

  • Cover It For The Winter

  • Change The Air Filter

  • Get a Heater Tune-Up

  • Consider A Replacement 

We’ve ordered this list so the tips move from free and DIY to costing a few dollars and then to more expensive investments. The first four are essential, and the last item is only necessary if you think you need it. 

And if it’s time to schedule a tune-up or free consultation about a new system in your South Central Pennsylvania home, call or email us here at Air Comfort Technologies! We serve Manchester, York, Camp Hill, and other nearby towns. Click below or call us for all your AC and heater repair and replacement needs. 

Clean Around The Outdoor Unit

One of the best ways to keep your AC in excellent condition for next summer is cleaning up around the outdoor condenser when you’re done using it for the season. It’s common for lawn clippings, leaves, or even trash and other debris. A little autumn cleaning is for more than just appearances. 

Why Does My Air Conditioner Freeze Up?

Leaving trash around the condenser can cause a host of problems. First off, it can make the area attractive to rodents, vermin, and other critters looking for a place to stay for the winter. A buildup of twigs, leaves, or grass makes it look like a nice place to nest. 

Next, you’ll deal with organic matter breaking down. That’s a breeding ground for bacteria and other nasty stuff. You don’t want it taking hold on or around the condenser because it can make its way into the system as the air passes through it. 

On the one hand, it takes a while for these problems to take hold. But, on the other, you may leave it there all winter if you don’t clear it out in the fall. Otherwise, the AC unit is usually out of sight and out of mind once the weather cools down. 

Cover It For The Winter

A Snow Covered ACOnce you’ve cleared out the area around the AC unit, the next step is covering the top of the condenser. But, there’s a specific way to do it, and it may not be the one you’re thinking of. We’ll get to that in a moment. 

There are two good reasons to cover the unit. The first is to protect the unit from rain, snow, and ice. Precipitation causes rust. And, large icicles can damage the exposed fan blades

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When you look down into the unit, you’ll see the fan sitting just below the grate. All it takes is one heavy icicle to fall from your house and bend the blade. Once that happens, your system won’t work in the spring — and you probably won’t realize it until you try to use it. 

The second reason is something we mentioned before: animals nesting in or around the unit. We commonly see nests and even babies inside a condenser by the time spring rolls around. 

However, we do not recommend the cloth or vinyl AC covers you often see advertised. Sure, they’ll keep out the rain and snow. But, it won’t protect against the impact of an icicle. And it makes the unit more attractive to small animals. 

Putting the cover over the outdoor unit makes the inside warm and safe. Animals know that, and they find ways to scurry around or under it. So, to sum up: A cover won’t protect against ice. And it can make an infestation problem even worse. 

The better bet is to put a piece of plywood over the top and weigh it down with a brick or cinder block. Animals can’t move it, and an icicle won’t go through it. If you want, you can place the cover over that setup for a cleaner appearance.

Change The Air Filter

Changing An Air FilterChanging the air filter on your system is simple, inexpensive, and, above all, essential. You should do this every month that you’re using the system. But, it’s a good idea to do it at the end of the cooling season. That way, you’re ready for the winter. 

The filter screens out all sorts of tiny junk like dust and debris. That way, it doesn’t get into the system and cause damage. But, everything it traps will collect on the filter itself. Eventually, the filter becomes clogged from all that stuff. When that happens, air can’t pass through either. Then, the system doesn’t work correctly. 

Your central air coil is attached to the furnace. Both use the same blower motor and ductwork. So, you have one filter for both the heater and air conditioner. That’s why we’re considering this part of your AC routine for the fall: It gets you ready for the winter. 

How Much Does A Heater Cost?

Get a Heater Tune-Up

Next, it’s time to get a heater tune-up! Hopefully, you had your AC inspected before the cooling season. If not, there’s still time during the summer, and you may avoid a breakdown by making sure everything’s working properly. 

After that, it’s time for heater maintenance. And, again, when you do this in the early fall when you’re closing down your AC system, you’ll be all set for the winter. A tune-up takes about an hour and costs around $100. That’s much less than the cost of a repair. And, you’ll save money each month on your energy bills. 

This professional maintenance involves a tech cleaning the inside of the system, checking all the electrical components, and replacing anything that’s broken or showing signs of excessive wear. It’s an excellent way to make sure the system is in excellent shape for the cold weather ahead. 

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Consider A Replacement 

Finally, fall is the best time of year to think about a new central air conditioner! If your system has been showing signs of wear, you don’t want to risk a breakdown next summer. Along with that peace of mind, putting in a new AC in the fall gets you: 

  • Better Pricing

  • More Options

  • Easier Installation

Better Pricing

Summer and winter are an HVAC company’s busy seasons. Then, business tapers off in the fall and spring. As a result, companies are more likely to offer better pricing during those months. This way, they keep working when people aren’t calling for repairs or emergency service.

More Options

Time is on your side when you begin looking at air conditioners in the fall. You’re not dealing with a broken-down system during a heatwave. So, you can take your time and decide which model is best for your home. 
That could mean something similar to what you have now, only more efficient. Or, you can explore options that can solve a problem, like a bedroom that’s always too hot. 

Easier Installation

Finally, scheduling an installation is much easier in the off-season. With a lighter schedule, your HVAC company has more time available and can work around your schedule. 

Air Conditioner Service, Repair, And Replacement In South Central Pennsylvania

Whether you need a tune-up or AC service or are looking for air conditioner repair or replacement in your South Central Pennsylvania home, Air Comfort Technologies has you covered! We serve homes and businesses from Lancaster to Gettysburg. Call or click below to schedule your appointment or free consultation.

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