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How to Get Your Air Conditioner Ready for the Off Season

With the weather getting cooler and the heating season just around the corner, it’s time (past time in some areas) to start thinking about preparing your home’s central air conditioner for the off season. That way, it will be set next spring when the warm temperatures return to Alberta. Take the following steps to get your A/C ready for winter:

Cover it. If you have a split-system central air conditioner, it’s a good idea to cover the outside unit (compressor/condenser) once the cooling season is over. This will protect it from the elements and flying debris during high winds and storms. But don’t just cover it with a tarp or other solid covering. Most home-improvement stores have specially made covers for outside A/C units that have small openings for ventilation. Without some air movement inside the outside unit, trapped moisture can damage parts. If that’s a bit too elaborate for you, just place a plywood board across the top of the outside A/C. (Remember, if you use a heat pump to heat and cool your home, NEVER cover the outside unit.)

Clear the area. Remove any yard debris (weeds, sticks, grass cuttings, etc) and other small objects from around the air conditioner’s outside unit. This will prevent debris from blowing into the unit during the long winter.

Check the air filter. It’s best to have a clean air filter going into the off season, even though you won’t be using the A/C for several months. If your furnace serves as the air handler for the air conditioner, just stick with the recommended regimen of checking the air filter monthly and changing it when it looks dirty.

Get professional maintenance. If it’s the end of the cooling season, that means it’s the beginning of the heating season. Your HVAC system ideally should receive professional maintenance at the start of both the heating and cooling season. It doesn’t hurt to have a technician inspect your A/C while he’s performing maintenance on your heating system.

To schedule a maintenance tune-up for your Calgary home’s HVAC system, please contact us at Arpi’s Industries.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Calgary, Alberta about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about air conditioner maintenance and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide.

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