Air Conditioning Maintenance for Albuquerque Summers

Air Conditioning Maintenance for Albuquerque Summers because the weather is changing – getting warmer! It won’t be long and we will all have our air conditioners running full out! Now is the time to do some basic maintenance to ensure a smooth, problem free summer!

 A Basic Explanation of How Your Air Conditioning Works

Air conditioners were actually invented in the early 1900s as a way to reduce indoor humidity in paper plants, but like many other inventions it turned out to be a blessing in another way- to cool our houses and offices!  

Air conditioning systems work through the expansion and contraction of specific gasses to pull moisture out of the air by cooling it down. These units are as basic as it gets — warm air holds more water, cool air holds less.

The cycle is really simple.  Warm air is sucked into your air handler (for many, this is a furnace) through your warm air return and forced over a tent-shaped coil that uses refrigerant to cool the air as it passes. A blower then blows that cooled air back into the house.

The ‘Outside Parts’

The air conditioning condenser sitting outside is actually a giant heatsink. The air that is cooled inside your air handler is actually giving up heat (not really cooling) and the refrigerant is what’s absorbing most of the heat. The refrigerant is pumped to the outside unit (the condenser) where the heat collected inside your house is released to the environment.

This simple idea has made a huge change to how we live, play and work!

How to Get Your Air Conditioner Ready for Summer.

Although we are sharing these ideas with you, we are happy to come do this for you professionally!   These items should be done at least once in the spring before you start using the A/C and again in the fall when you’re ready to put it away for the year.

#1 Change your furnace filter. 

No matter whether it’s on the ceiling, or inside your furnace or air handler, or on the floor, a clean filter is a filter that can let the most air through for cooling.

The easier it is for the blower to pass that air (less restriction) the more efficient the machine is at cooling – and the less electricity you will use!

#2 Comb the fins on the outside unit.

The condenser is a heat exchanger and uses fins to allow the most area possible for heat transfer.  These fins are fragile and can get damaged by accident, causing them to be less efficient. Use a ‘fin comb’ to straighten bent fins and restore your unit to its efficient operation.

#3 Clean the condenser. 

Keep your condenser clean! Leaves and dirt make a difference.Start by wetting all the fins with a garden sprayer, then go back around and spend some time slowly flushing out the dirt, one section at a time, working top to bottom.

#4 Check your condensation line. 

In the house, where the coil is, resides a drain pipe to allow removal of condensation from the cooled air.  We have seen many a minor flood in someone’s ceiling due to backed up condensation lines because of algae growth in the tube or mineral deposits. These can be flushed out, but require some patience to remove.

#5 Clean your coil. 

That tent shaped coil that is used inside to remove the heat is called the “evaporator coil” or the “a-coil.” It can get dirty, which makes it a lot less efficient at removing moisture and cooling the air. With care,  wipe the coils clean or use a shop vac to remove dirt. They’re very similar to the coils on the back of your refrigerator, and easily damaged.

Ready For An A/C Tune-Up?

If spring cleaning your air conditioner isn’t getting the results you’re looking for, it may be time to call Polar Heating and Refrigeration.  

Call today (505) 250-2329 to learn more about maintaining, replacing or repairing your HVAC, then enjoy a lower utility bill, quieter machinery and better conditioned and cleaner air in your home!