How to Prepare Your AC for Winter

You might forget about AC maintenance when winter rolls around. After all, the unit served its purpose by keeping your home cool during the summer. But the reality is that HVAC units need year-round maintenance to keep functioning at a high level.

Read on to find out what you need to do for winter AC preparation.

Why winter maintenance is important

If you fail to take care of your unit during the winter, the cold weather, snow and ice may cause damage. It’s also possible that pests could build nests inside the unit if it is left untouched. Some tasks will require the help of an HVAC professional, but others you can do on your own. Taking out this time is worth it to avoid costly repairs or replacement in the future.

Shut off the AC unit

The unit’s exterior power circuit will be located inside a small box that’s mounted on the side of the home. Lift up the cover; locate the switch; and turn it to the “off” position. This will prevent the unit from turning on if the weather becomes unseasonably warm. It will also keep out water that could freeze, causing damage to the condensing unit.

Clean the AC unit

Make sure that the area surrounding the AC is clear of any leaves, branches or other debris. Use a hose to clear away any dirt or dust; then allow the unit to dry. Regular cleaning protects the air conditioner and means it won’t get clogged and break down.

Perform regular inspections

It’s important to regularly inspect the unit. Check the casing for cracks and rusting as well as any other issues. Inspect the seals to be certain that they are tight and not suffering from cracking.

These issues may start out appearing to be minor, but they can become major problems over time. Whenever you notice any cracking, rusting or other irregularities, then it’s time to bring in a licensed professional HVAC contractor. Perform these checks once weekly.

Cover the unit

Adding a waterproof plastic or vinyl cover on top will help prevent cracking and protect the unit from adverse weather conditions. Covers made specifically for this purpose are available at home improvement stores. You could also use a tarp secured with bungee cords as a cover.

Regular AC maintenance is about more than just changing the air filter and responding to problems as they pop up. It’s about ensuring that your investment lasts as long as possible and keeps your home comfortable during the hot summer months.

If you need assistance with winter AC maintenance, then turn to the pros at Rapids Plumbing & Heating, Inc. Since 1982, we have helped our loyal customers with all of their plumbing and heating needs. Our technicians are available to help with all issues for commercial and residential customers alike. Our services cover installation, maintenance and repairs for any products, such as water heaters, furnaces, boilers, toilets, sinks and more. Free estimates are available from our plumbers and heating contractors when you call today.