Maintaining Your Air Handler For Cooling Season

Springtime is a good time of the year to do preventative maintenance on your air conditioning system. Taking care of small problems before it gets too warm may keep the equipment operating trouble free during the hot weather.

While you are performing these checks make sure the power has been disconnected.

The first order of business is to check the air filter and change if needed. This simple item can prevent the coil from  freezing up due to a lack of airflow. If your furnace or air handler uses a 1″ standard air filter we recommend using a good quality pleated air filter. We do not recommend using a 1″ filter with a merv rating higher than 8 as this type of filter may cause airflow restrictions and this can lead to inefficient system operation and in some cases cause damage to the equipment.  If you have a high efficiency filter cabinet we strongly recommend installing the correct air filter for the cabinet. This style filter is usually marketed in a nominal size. The filters do not all have the same outside  dimensions and a generic filter or an incorrect filter may lead to leakage around the filter which prevents all of the air from being filtered.

While looking at the air filter is a good time to make sure the condensate drain for the coil is clean and free. This simple step may prevent water damage if the drain is partially restricted or clogged.

While you are checking the indoor unit make sure the blower spins free and take a look at the circuit board for any hot spots or loose connections. Also examine the copper piping for any signs of oil or rubbing marks. Copper is a soft metal and rubbing on other copper lines or the sheet metal cabinet may cause a refrigerant leak. If you see signs of oil you may already have a leak that will need to be addressed by a technician.

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