Caring for the air conditioner in your Carrollton, Texas home is a year-round, multi-pronged effort. Although you can handle minor maintenance tasks like AC filter changes and removing built-up debris at the outdoor condenser, there are many jobs that require the trained precision of HVAC technicians. Your air conditioner should be professionally inspected and tuned up at least once each year. It should also receive professional attention whenever it makes strange sounds, emits unpleasant smells, or exhibits other signs of distress. The following is everything you need to know about scheduling AC inspections.

Early Spring Is the Perfect Time to Schedule Your Annual AC Inspection

Most air conditioners are built to last between 15 and 20 years. Moreover, throughout much of their lifespans, these units should hold up well without constant intervention from HVAC professionals. Unless any significant functional problems arise, you should be able to get by with scheduling a single maintenance visit each spring.

During this service, we’ll examine and thoroughly clean your indoor evaporator unit and your air conditioner’s outside condenser. We’ll calibrate your thermostat, clear out blockages, replace worn components, and more. These visits prime AC units for the hot summer months. For outside condensers, inspections are also an opportunity to undo the ravages of the winter season.

Scheduling AC tune-up service in spring allows homeowners to beat the hectic, seasonal rush for service that typically occurs in late May and early June. This is when many people turn their air conditioners on for the first time of the season, only to discover that their cooling equipment isn’t working correctly or isn’t working at all. Scheduling spring maintenance eliminates the potential for unpleasant surprises like these, and it makes it easy to nab a timely appointment.

Scheduling Inspections When Problems Arise Keeps Minor Issues From Spiraling

AC inspections are also necessary whenever air conditioners stop performing optimally. For instance, you might notice:

  • A sudden and inexplicable spike in your home energy bills
  • Loud clanging or rattling sounds during AC operation
  • Excess indoor humidity
  • Significantly longer or shorter cooling cycles
  • Hot and cold spots throughout your home

Even the development of dank, musty smells while your cooling equipment is on is cause for concern. Immediately reporting these issues and having them checked out gives our technicians the chance to mitigate or resolve problems before they’ve spiraled out of control. Having timely repairs performed rather than ignoring problems and continuing to use your AC can drastically reduce your spending as well. It can also play a hand in extending the lifespan of your air conditioner by preventing excess stress from causing accelerated wear.

Your AC May Require Additional Service for Warranty Compliance

If your air conditioner is still covered by its original manufacturer’s warranty, scheduling an annual inspection and tune-up service is often mandatory for remaining compliant with this agreement. This is also true for most AC coverages provided by your home insurance plan, and most AC protections that exist under your home warranty agreement.

Although annual AC inspections are a general requirement for warranty and insurance compliance, it’s a good idea to read through all relevant policies or contracts in their entirety. You may find that your insurer or your warranty issuer requires twice-yearly AC inspections or has other specific instructions for ongoing AC care. Reading these documents will help you avoid costly missteps so that the related protections aren’t lost. There are also times when the costs of mandatory AC inspections are covered in part or in full by home insurance policies or home warranties.

Schedule an AC Inspection After a Local Fire

The Dallas-Fort Worth area has two distinct fire seasons each year. The winter fire season spans from February to April, and the summer fire season runs from August through October. If there’s ever a fire in your neck of the woods, your air conditioner could take a veritable beating.

A local fire could require you to shelter in place, seal up your windows and doors, and use your air conditioner for cooling until the outdoor air quality has improved. Although shutting your air conditioner’s intake valve will keep this unit from bringing outdoor smoke in, this doesn’t mean that your AC won’t be subjected to a lot of extra stress.

Inspection services after local fires ensure that air conditioners are safe for use. Trapped smoke odors and residual chemicals can be just as hazardous to human health as the smoke itself. These visits are also an opportunity for our team to reverse some of the extra wear that air conditioners have taken on by removing toxic build-ups and replacing damaged or worn parts.

Have Your Air Conditioner Checked After a Major Pest Infestation

Central heating and cooling systems are incredibly attractive to pests. From HVAC ductwork to outside condensers, there are a number of warm, sheltered hiding spaces that are appealing to both insects and animals. If you’ve been hearing scuttling, scratching, or thumping sounds in your HVAC air ducts, or if you’ve recently spotted a nest in your condenser, have an HVAC professional check it out. Even when pests don’t cause direct structural damage to heating and cooling equipment, they can still impact its performance and have a major impact on human health. Your air ducts could be riddled with hair, fur, and feces.

There are also instances in which pests crawl into HVAC air ducts and die. This frequently happens when small animals wander into these spaces and cannot find their way back out. Carcasses are often found in HVAC air ducts just after homeowners have used rodent poisoning or other toxic pest control products. Poisoned animals frequently search for remote, closed-off areas during the last stages of their life. If this ever happens in your home, you may be confronted with the overbearing, putrid smell of decomposition. If you have a decomposing animal in your air ducts or condenser, we can remove the offending carcass and deodorize and disinfect all of the affected surfaces.

Model and Age-Specific Requirements for Air Conditioners

As with all complex equipment, the need for professional care will likely increase as your air conditioner ages. If your air conditioner is more than 10 years old, it certainly won’t hurt to have it looked at a second time after the summer season has ended. You can schedule an older air conditioner’s second yearly inspection at the same time as your autumn furnace service.

Autumn air conditioner inspections tend to be quick and easy. Rather than completely tuning your air conditioner up, we can simply make sure that it’s ready for a long period of dormancy and that when the hot season comes rolling around again, your air conditioner still has life left in it. After the 10-year mark, simply turning air conditioners off at the season’s end and hoping that they’ll turn on could result in unpleasant surprises.

We’ve been proudly serving residents of Carrollton, Texas and the greater Dallas-Fort Worth area for more than 70 years. We offer air conditioner, heat pump, and heater installation, maintenance, and repairs. We also provide preventative maintenance plans, HVAC air duct installation, and indoor air quality solutions. If your air conditioner needs annual service or repairs, we can help. Give Dring Air Conditioning & Heating a call today to schedule an appointment.

Dennis Chaisson

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