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4 Items To Tick Off Your Spring AC Checklist

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If you live in one of the warmer parts of the country, your cooling season may begin as early as the end of winter and last well into the fall. Still, summer is typically the most in-demand time for air conditioning and when you need your system to function most effectively. Ensuring you can remain cool and comfortable all summer often means doing some work as spring begins. 

Whether you're getting ready to fire up your air conditioner for the first time this year or you've had it going for a few months, you'll still want to take care of these four important items before the worst summer heat arrives.

1. Keep Fresh Filters Handy

"Check and replace your filter" is one of the most oft-repeated pieces of air conditioning advice, and for a good reason. A clogged filter won't just affect indoor air quality; it will also overstress and potentially damage critical system components, such as the compressor. Learn to measure your air filter's size and keep some spares on hand. If in doubt, replace a dirty filter rather than letting your system struggle.

2. Check Your Thermostat Settings

Switching from heating to cooling should be as simple as changing modes on your thermostat, right? While flipping that mode switch will engage cooling mode, you should also check your fan setting. If you typically leave your fan set to "on" or "recirculate" during the winter, you should change the setting to "auto" for the summer.

You never want your fan to run without the compressor since this can increase indoor humidity or the likelihood of your evaporator freezing up. Always check and (if necessary) switch your thermostat fan settings before the cooling season begins.

3. Evaluate Your System

The best way to use your air conditioner is to "set it and forget it." Once you set a comfortable temperature, you shouldn't need to adjust the thermostat again unless you're leaving the house or going to sleep for the night. If you're constantly adjusting your thermostat up and down, you may have an issue requiring professional attention.

You should also consider how long your system takes to cool your home. If your system is struggling to keep up with relatively mild spring heat, you should have a technician look now rather than wait for the depths of summer.

4. Schedule Your Annual Maintenance Visit

Even if your system seems to be running well, you should still plan to schedule an annual maintenance check-up before summer arrives. A visiting technician can help look for problems you might miss and take extra maintenance steps to ensure your system can operate as efficiently as possible throughout the summer.

Contact a local AC contractor to learn more.