As the weather starts changing around Louisville, the excitement builds to throw open the windows and spend time outside. Before you know it, summer will be in full force, and you’ll want the relief your HVAC system brings during the hottest days. Follow these seven steps this spring to ensure that you’ll have cool air when the summer really heats up.

1. Clean and Clear Your Vents

Check each of your vents to ensure they are open so that air can flow from them easily. Take a few minutes to also wipe each with a damp cloth to prevent dust and dirt from falling down into your ducts.

Look at what’s around your vents as well, especially if you had to move furniture to get at it. Each vent needs at least 2 inches around and above it to allow air to circulate properly. Consider moving things around to provide this clearance.

2. Remove Your AC Cover and Clear the Area

Next, if you put a cover on your outdoor unit, start by removing it. Regardless of whether you have a cover on, take a few minutes to check the condition of your unit and clear the surrounding area. The outside unit requires at least 12 inches completely clear around the entire unit, so clear out any debris, leaves, weeds, or grass. Make sure any trees or shrubs are pruned back to give the proper clearance, including above it so that it can vent properly.

While looking at your unit, check for any damage that it may have sustained. If you can see through the grill, check to make sure that the fins on the coil aren’t bent and blocking airflow. A technician will also check this during spring maintenance if you can’t easily see it.

3. Change Your Batteries

Batteries power most modern thermostats, which won’t last forever. If you wait to change them until you get the low battery indicator, chances are that your system is already experiencing degraded performance.

Rather than waiting, plan to change your batteries twice a year. The ideal time to do this is when you switch your system’s mode between heating and cooling. You can also plan to do it when you get your system maintenance in the fall and spring.

4. Update Your Programs

While working on your thermostat, be sure you change your programs to match the new season. You’ll want to adjust the temperature settings as well.

While working on your programs, also check the time your thermostat adjusts the temperature. You may have a different schedule with the warmer weather, so don’t assume you need the same schedule you use over the winter.

5. Check and Replace Your Air Filter

Now is a great time to also check on your air filter and change it if needed. In most cases, air filters require replacing every 30 days to six months, depending on the particulars of your system and your air quality. The cooler months are typically drier, so you may need to change your filter more frequently because of additional airborne particles.

Even if you just changed your filter, plan to check it and make sure that it’s clear going into the spring. While you’re inspecting it, give it a boost by vacuuming off what has collected on its surface.

6. Schedule Your Spring Tune-up

Take a few minutes to schedule your spring AC tune-up. During this process, a technician will clean, tighten, test, and inspect your system to ensure that it’s operating at its intended efficiency.

Additionally, it’ll uncover minor problems early, like a failing capacitor or a small refrigerant leak. Identifying and resolving these issues early prevents additional damage to your system and higher utility bills.

7. Clean and Reverse Your Ceiling Fans

Finally, take a few minutes to prepare your ceiling fans for the summer. Turn the fan off and clean the fan blades. While you’re there, flip the switch on the fan housing to reverse the fan spin direction. Over the summer, your ceiling fans should spin counterclockwise to create a windchill effect, making the air feel about 2 degrees cooler.

Residents around Louisville desiring to stay comfortable throughout the year have turned to Breckinridge Heating & Cooling since 1954. Our expert technicians specialize in providing reliable heating and air conditioning repair, maintenance, and installation along with indoor air quality improvements. Call to schedule your spring HVAC tune-up appointment with one of our friendly technicians today.

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