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How to Prep Your AC for Desert Heat

Extreme desert heat can take quite a toll on your air conditioner. You can spare little time without a working AC when the temperature is 100+ degrees Fahrenheit. But there are many steps you can take to ensure your system is ready forthe summer heat in Phoenix. We will now explore a few of these.

Schedule an AC Tune-Up

Change your filters every 30 to 60 days or have a contractor do so and address potential issues with airflow at the same time.A Hays air conditioning technician will test your system to make sure it’s working properly. They can also check for air leaks and provide remedies such as duct sealing, fixing broken weather stripping, and repairing holes in walls or near doors or windows. Scheduling preventative maintenance in spring can ensure you have much-needed comfort all summer long.

Recognize the Signs of Trouble

Air conditioners that operate in hot, dry climates tend to have more frequent problems. Check often for dirty filters; dust and debris build up faster in desert areas. If the filter is dirty, the AC will work even harder and be at risk of damage or a breakdown. Keeping filters clean is one of the most important, and easiest, ways to maintain the unit.

If you see moisture, whether due to condensation or a water or refrigerant leak, this is a serious problem. Leaking coolant can be hazardous to your health, so call a professional immediately. If a drain tube is leaking, water damage or mold can occur. Another concern is noise; if your AC is making grating, grinding, or squealing sounds, the issues range from broken motor bearings to a slipped belt, or the need to lubricate metal parts.

Odors should be addressed quickly as well. A burning smell may mean wire insulation is melting. Musty odors can mean your AC and/or ductwork is contaminated with mold.

Practice Good Habits

Even in extreme heat, you can keep your house cool through good habits. Here are some tips to making sure your AC is ready for summer:

  • Do not place the thermostat near a lamp or heat-producing appliance.
  • Keep two to four feet of clearance around the outdoor unit.
  • Place the unit in a cool, shaded space; direct sunlight can reduce efficiency.
  • Close windows, blinds, and curtains to keep sunlight out of your home.
  • Avoid using the oven and try to cook outside.
  • Let dishes air dry rather than using the dishwasher’s dry cycle.
  • Take shorter showers and properly ventilate your bathroom.
  • Hang dry laundry rather than use the dryer during the day.
  • Optimize air flow by closing doors to unused rooms/closets, rearranging furniture, and using ceiling fans.

Keep the AC Unit Clean

Air conditioner coils, both outdoors and indoors, must be kept clean. Dirt can reduce heat transfer and efficiency. If there are grass clippings, leaves, and other debris from shrubs and trees around your outdoor unit, clear them away. Such debris can impede airflow. Check the area frequently as plant matter and dirt can quickly build up or blow in.

Schedule Maintenance with Hays Heating, Cooling & Plumbing

We provide air conditioner maintenance throughout the Phoenix area. This allows us to adjust the system as needed, perform an AC tune up, or fix your AC to prepare it for the summer heat. Our team specializes in servicing Trane and other leading-brand systems. To schedule AC service, submit your request online or call 602-641-4473.

About the Author

Chris Hays

Founder of Hays Cooling, Heating & Plumbing

Chris and Stacia Hays, are the founders of Hays Cooling, Heating & Plumbing; a family operated HVAC company in Phoenix founded in 2001 that services both commercial and residential customers. Chris leads a team of certified technicians who have over 45 years of combined experience and has earned and A+ rating with the BBB and a strong five star rating online. Hays Cooling, Heating & Plumbing focuses on providing support to their customers every step of the way, with exceptional service and competitive prices. If you are looking for top-notch air conditioning and heating service, contact Hays today.