The Aging A/C System: Maintenance Tips Homeowners Can Use To Help Keep It Working


Those who live with an aging air conditioning system have learned to dread going home after work during summer's hottest months. In addition to the discomfort endured while waiting in traffic in hot, humid conditions, they also must worry about what they will find when they step inside their homes. Will the stress of kicking on more often and running for longer periods of time have delivered the final blow to their air conditioning system? Is the interior of their home already becoming stuffy and uncomfortable? 

While replacing the AC system would ultimately resolve this problem and remove that sense of dread, the expense involved in doing so may be beyond the family budget. This leaves these homeowners with only one choice — learning to maintain their older system to lengthen its usable life span. If you are among the many homeowners who find themselves coddling an older air conditioning system in the hopes that they can postpone replacing it, here are some smart maintenance tips that can you help you achieve that goal. 

Keep it clean, outside and in

Dirt and dust is the biggest enemy faced by the components in your home's HVAC system. Both clog filters and force the system's motor and fans to work harder to push air through constricted openings in filters, ducts, and vents. Dust is also known to damage delicate electrical sensors and connections due to the sharp edges found on each minute particle. 

Homeowners who want to keep an older A/C system working should take the time to clean both the interior and exterior components of their air conditioning system. This should be done both prior to the start of the cooling season and again during periods of heaviest usage. 

Nix frequent thermostat adjustments 

Family members who tend to randomly adjust the thermostat settings probably do not realize that their actions may increase the load on their home's aging air conditioning system. A good plan for preventing these frequent adjustments from occurring is to hold a family meeting to educate and ask for help. 

During this meeting, homeowners will want to explain that the system is very old and that replacing it right now just isn't in the budget. Next, ask for input from everyone to determine if there are any legitimate concerns that the home is too warm or too cool. Once everyone has had a chance to provide their views, work together to come up with a plan for keeping the thermostat set correctly, even if it means a period of adjustment to get used to the agreed-upon setting. 

Make a plan for frequent filter changes

As mentioned previously, dust and dirt inside our air conditioning components can cause serious damage to your air conditioning system. Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning experts agree that installing a fresh filter frequently is one of the most important ways to maintain the home air conditioning system. 

Homeowners who struggle with remembering to change their system's filter may want to do the following: 

  • teach a responsible child how to remove the old filter and install a new one
  • set an alarm on their mobile phone or calendar app to remind them 
  • subscribe to a filter delivery program that auto-ships the correct filter on a pre-selected schedule

If you are guilty of remembering to change the filter only to find you do not have a new one on hand to replace it, you may want to invest in a pair of washable filters so that you never again need to shop for replacements. 

Schedule preventative maintenance 

Fixing small problems before they become larger and more expensive can help to prolong the life of an aging air system. By contacting an air conditioning maintenance service and setting up a proactive maintenance schedule, homeowners can take an important step toward keeping their system working well. 


14 May 2019

furnace repairs - do it yourself?

Can furnace repairs be made by the average DIYer? If you know a little about what you are doing, is it possible to avoid the expense of having a professional come out to take care of any problems that you are having? My blog is all about furnace safety and repair. You will learn a few things that you can do on your own and advice for when to call in the professional repair technician to assist with the repairs. By the time you reach the end, you will have a better understanding of what you can and should not do on your own.