Here's Your Seasonal A/C Maintenance Guide

If you count on your air conditioner to keep you comfortable all summer, it pays to perform maintenance in the spring and fall. In the spring, tune-ups get the unit ready for the long cooling season. In the fall, it's wise to prepare the unit for several months of winter weather.

Spring and Summer Air Conditioning Maintenance

Schedule air conditioning service in the early spring or around the beginning of Daylight Saving Time to make sure that your system is ready for months of hot weather. Your technician will inspect and test the air handler, compressor, coils and other components. Here are a few tasks that your Trane Comfort Specialist will complete.

  • Monitor the cooling cycle
  • Inspect and flush the condensate drain
  • Test the thermostat for proper operation
  • Clean the evaporator and condenser coils
  • Tighten mechanical and electrical connections
  • Measure and adjust refrigerant levels if needed
  • Remove dust from air-handling components
  • Lubricate the blower motor as directed
  • Examine refrigerant lines and valves
  • Inspect belts for wear

Monthly Maintenance Tasks

Before performing air conditioning maintenance, consult the owner's manual. Follow all maintenance guidelines provided by the manufacturer. Here are a few tasks that you can complete yourself.

  • Inspect the return air filter every month, and replace it as needed.
  • Keep vegetation 18 inches away from each side of the outdoor unit.
  • Clean debris away from the compressor to maintain proper airflow.
  • Tell your technician if you hear any unusual noises.

Fall and Winter Maintenance for Your A/C Unit

Spring tuneups are important, but did you know that fall maintenance also has an effect on how well your air conditioning system will work next year? Here are a few tasks that will protect your system during the winter to ensure that it's ready for the next hot day.

  • Fall is a good time to remove leaves, sticks and debris that have collected around the outdoor unit, compressor and refrigerant lines. Your Trane Comfort Specialist can remove any leaves that have fallen through the grill and into the unit.
  • Take time to clean the compressor coils and the fins with a garden hose or specially made degreaser. Pollen, grass clippings and fluff from trees can clog the space between the fins and prevent the warm air from being released. Never use a pressure washer because it can damage the unit.
  • If the heat-dissipating fins around the coils have been bent by a weed whacker or sudden impact, your HVAC technician can use a comb-like tool to straighten them. This helps to improve efficiency and reverse any damage that has occurred in the summer.
  • To keep your Trane A/C unit looking like new, clean the outside with soap and water or a nonabrasive cleanser. Your user manual may have additional recommendations.
  • There's no need to cover the outdoor unit since these products are built to withstand the elements. If you are expecting violent weather, the top of the unit can be covered briefly to prevent damage.
  • Trim or remove vegetation and seasonal weeds in early fall. Shrubs and woody plants can be pruned in the winter or after they flower.
  • When you schedule your heater tune-up in the fall, ask the technician to inspect and weatherize your air conditioner.
  • Do not run your air conditioner when the outside temperature is below 60 degrees. The refrigerant condenses in very low temperatures unless the unit has a heat element in the crankcase.
  • Start weatherizing your A/C unit as you prepare your heating system for the winter. Replace the return air filter. Change the thermostat battery. Test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

Contacting an Independent Trane Dealer

To schedule seasonal air conditioning maintenance in the spring or fall, contact a Trane Dealer in your community. Our dealers perform tune-ups, repairs and installation services so that you can enjoy a higher level of comfort. Use our dealer locator form to find a qualified contractor today.

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