Like the song goes: “You don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone.”
It is hard to truly appreciate how important your home’s air conditioning is during the dog days of summer until you are faced with a worn down, burnt out air conditioner. A typical air conditioner lifespan can run anywhere from 10 to 20 years. Once it reaches the end of its run, it will likely not be able to keep up with the demand of keeping your home cool or stop working altogether. You’ll be faced with the inconvenient and often expensive task of having to replace it.
However, that 10-20 year window is not a set-in-stone timeframe. Many factors come into play when determining an air conditioner lifespan. If left neglected and uncared for, an air conditioner will wear out much faster. However if well maintained and other protective measures are taken, your air conditioner may last many more years past this time frame!
Air conditioner care extends air conditioner lifespan, leaving you with a unit that runs better for longer and can delay the need for the expensive investment of installing a brand new air conditioner as long as possible. If that idea seems appealing to you (and why on Earth wouldn’t it?!) follow these tips for extending your air conditioner lifespan.
Regularly change the filter
Your AC’s air filter helps prevent dust, dirt, hair, and other particles and allergens from getting inside your unit. Without it, this dust and dirt will proceed to coat the inside of your air conditioner and cause malfunctions. However, if a filter gets too dirty it can make airflow more difficult and your air conditioner must work harder to compensate. Keeping your filter fresh and clean helps keep your unit from having to work extra hard.
While the filters you purchase may have recommendations on how often to change them based on the quality, a good rule to follow is ensuring you replace your filter at least once every three months. If, however, you happen to live in a home with lots of pets, their hair and dander may mean you’ll want to change them every month and a half or two months.
Keep ducts clean
The dirt, dander, hair, and dust that your filters catch will try to make their way into your air conditioner through the ducts running through your home. As your ducts collect more and more allergens your air filters will become clogged faster and faster. Dirty ducts can also contribute to inhibiting airflow and intake, once again making your air conditioner work harder to distribute cool air.
Keeping ducts clean helps keep your air filters and home cleaner, taking stress off your air conditioner and extending its life. Not only that, it helps prevent all that nasty stuff from blowing around your house and into your lungs. While your air filter needs to be changed every couple of months, your air ducts are an even more occasional piece of maintenance. Breedlove Dobbs recommends getting your ducts cleaned every three to five years, depending on how prone your home is to dust, dander, or hair.
Regular preventative maintenance
The single most effective way homeowners can extend their air conditioner lifespan is by investing in regular preventative maintenance. Spring and fall clean and checks by your trusted heating and cooling service provider can make sure your air conditioner is clean from the dirt and grime that contributes to malfunctions as well as catch and repair any issues before they evolve into larger problems.
Breedlove Dobbs helps our customers extend their air conditioning and heating systems’ life by offering Comfort Guard. Our protection plan provides year-round protection and peace of mind that your unit is working under optimal conditions and in the most ideal position to last as long as possible.
Give it a rest (when you can)
Running your air conditioner 24/7 may be necessary to keep your home cool during the peak heat of summer, but that also means the constant working may cause it to wear out its motor other internal components faster. While you also shouldn’t constantly turn your air conditioner off and on (the constant starting and stopping can put unnecessary strain on your AC too) take any opportunity you can to give your air conditioner a rest.
Cool evenings and breaks in the heat are perfect opportunities to open up the windows and let the cool air in to give your unit a rest. You can also make sure your system is set to AUTO instead of ON. When set to AUTO, your fan will only run when cool air is being pumped into your home. ON means the fan will always run, even when it isn’t cooling.
Manage heat sources
The hotter your home gets the harder your air conditioner has to work to keep it cool and the faster it may burn out. Do everything you can to keep your home’s heat and humidity sources in check and under control.
Humidity in particular can be a major issue. Fortunately, there are many effective methods for managing humidity you can try! Heat, however, can find its way into your home in a multitude of ways, but your windows are one of the most prevalent. Do your best during the hottest days to keep your blinds or curtains drawn to help prevent heat transfer.
Preventative maintenance is the most effective way to keep your air conditioner lifespan long and keep it running strong as long as possible! Breedlove Dobbs offers duct cleaning and air conditioning maintenance services, as well as our Comfort Guard service agreement, to help keep our Indianapolis area customers’ air conditioners clean and maintained. Call 317-888-9111 for your home estimate or to learn more about Comfort Guard.