GEARING UP FOR SUMMER
Spring is upon us and now is the perfect time to take note of any damage that may have been caused by winter and schedule A/C and other system maintenance services.
We have put together for you a checklist of things to consider before the summer. Use this checklist as a guide to decide what you feel is best for you and your home and whether you require A/C and other system maintenance service.
1: A/C Maintenance Service
It is generally a good idea to consider doing some basic A/C maintenance service on your air conditioning at the beginning of every cooling season. With a few checks and a little effort, you can help to insure a trouble-free summer cooling season.
- Inspect the outdoor unit panels: If the panel covering the electrical connections is missing or out of place, you should call a qualified technician for an assessment before starting your system.
- Remove any condenser covers, coil blankets or lids: If you covered the outdoor coil in order to protect it during the winter months, be sure to remove the cover before starting the system.
- Repair or replace any damaged pipe insulation: The suction line (the larger copper pipe on the outdoor unit) helps to supply cool refrigerant back to the compressor in the outdoor unit. If the system’s suction pipe has damaged insulation, this could cause a loss of required cooling for the outdoor unit which could damage your system and may also cause you to lose energy as well.
- Remove any debris from the outdoor coil: Depending on where you live or what side of the house your system is located on, you might find trash or vegetation blown into or against the coil. Remove this debris from the coil and surrounding area.
- Change the air filters: The change in seasons is usually a good time to replace your air filters.
- Check the coil drainage hose: This hose (usually plastic) can also be called the “condensate line”. Since the coil’s temperature is lower than the ambient air, water will condense on the coil and drip into the tray below. This condensate needs to flow to a drain or the tray will fill up and flood the unit or potentially spill water into your basement.
- Clean the supply vents and return grills: Make sure both the supply and return air grills and vents are open and free of debris. It would also be good to use the vacuum to remove any pet hair or dust that might have accumulated during the previous season.
A qualified and licensed Everest Mechanical HVAC technician can help you do a more thorough spring technical inspection and air conditioning maintenance service to avoid a system failure in the hottest months of the year.
Our technicians can also help address any concerns you have so let us know what you found during your own spring inspection and help avoid air conditioning repair services during summer.
2: New High Efficiency A/C Units
It’s no secret that running an old air conditioner system can mean paying more each month on your home’s energy bill. Updating or replacing an old AC or cooling system to a new high efficiency model can save homeowners a considerable amount of money month to month.
As a homeowner, it’s important to be aware of air conditioner efficiency standards when choosing a new AC unit. So, what is considered a high efficiency air conditioner? An air conditioner with a SEER rating of over 13 is generally regarded as high efficiency, but this depends on the size of the space you’re cooling and your own personal cooling preferences.
The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, or SEER, is a rating system that measures the maximum efficiency of an air conditioner. To calculate a unit’s SEER rating, the cooling output of a typical summer season is divided by the total electricity used in that same period.
Since this is a complicated thing to figure out, manufacturers provide this information for us. Every AC unit receives a SEER rating and the higher the rating, the more energy efficient it is.
The SEER rating of your air conditioning unit can be found on the outside of the unit (usually on a yellow sticker). While SEER rankings go up to 25, most air conditioning units sold today have a SEER rating between 13 and 21.
If you decide to invest in a high efficiency air conditioner this spring, Everest Mechanical can offer you professional air conditioner installation services.
3: Backflow Prevention & Clean outs
Backflow devices work to keep your home’s water separate and free of contaminates. Often, the valves controlling backflow devices rust and corrode over the winter, so it’s definitely worth checking that everything is in proper working order for the health and wellbeing of your home.
Tree root intrusion may also cause backflow prevention device destruction.
Everest Mechanical professionals can help eliminate this problem.
4: Drain Cleaning
Your drain and sewer system is one of the most used, yet most overlooked systems in your home. Think about how many times a day you use them- we certainly put them to work! Every time you take a shower, flush the toilet, wash the dishes or do a load of laundry, you are using your drains.
Because we use them so frequently, they are prone to clogs and buildup. Spring time is a perfect time to clean and clear your drains of obstruction, Everest Mechanical is ready to help.
Clogs can be a major inconvenience if they are able to escalate and worsen. Here are some signs to watch out for that signal you need a drain cleaner in your home:
- Slow drains: If you’re having trouble with a sink, you may have a clog. If several water fixtures won’t drain properly, then you most likely have one somewhere in your sewer line. A thorough drain cleaning with hot water and a mild detergent, or vinegar and baking soda may work, but if flushing each drain does nothing, then it’s time to call an Everest Mechanical certified plumber.
- Pests: Rats and bugs are never a good thing, but if your home is visited by unwelcome pests, they may be coming from a crack somewhere in the sewer line. Cockroaches and rats can squeeze through even the smallest of gaps.
- Sky-high water bills: If it seems like your utility bills are higher than usual, the culprit could be a hidden leak. No matter how small the leak is, a camera inspection will be able to accurately detect the source.
- Sewage backup: Sewage should go down your pipes, but if it winds up going the opposite direction, you’ll want to call us immediately. If it appears that the sewage only backs up out of one drain, then it’s most likely isolated. If it seems like sewage backs up every time you flush a toilet or use a sink, then the problem may be much deeper in your sewer line.
- Foul odors: You shouldn’t smell sewage in or around your home. If you can, then there’s probably a crack somewhere in the sewer line. Your plumbing should be sealed tight, but sewer gases can escape through cracks. A camera inspection will be quick to find where foul odors are coming from.
- Mold and mildew. If you smell something foul and musty, call us at Everest Mechanical immediately. Not only is mold toxic for your health, it needs excessive moisture to grow. If there’s mold growing in your home, there’s usually a leak that’s causing it.
6: Water Heater Flushes & Maintenance
The water heater is something we rely on every day but rarely think about – until something goes wrong and we have to call in a plumber for a water heater repair. Colorado homeowners may not even realize that they should be performing regular water heater maintenance.
Water Heater Maintenance extends the life of your tank. Simply completing a few quick annual water heater maintenance tasks can significantly extend the life of your water heater, whether it is gas or electric. These can be done yourself or by an Everest Mechanical plumber.
- Turn down the temperature: Simply regulating the temperature on your water heater not only protects your tank from overheating, but it saves energy and reduces wear and tear on the unit. The recommended temperature setting is between 115 and 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Check the T&P Valve: The temperature and pressure relief valve relieves any excess heat or pressure buildup inside your water heater to keep it functioning safely. Every year, you should check to make sure this valve is still working.
- Perform a Minior Flushing: Finally, you should flush out some of the water from the tank to help remove any sediment that has built up at the bottom. Doing so will help improve the unit’s efficiency, as well as prevent rust or corrosion. While a mini-flush can help your water heater function better, you should also occasionally incorporate a full-scale drain and flush into your water heater maintenance plan.
7: Hose Bip Repairs
While carrying out your spring plumbing inspection, make sure all elements of your water system are functional and leak-free. Do all of the faucets work? Can you see liquid pooling around any pipes in your crawl space? How about your outside hose bibs – do they work?
In addition to broken pipes, ice can destroy hose bibs, the special faucets that connect the hose to the side of your home.
If you do discover ice-related damage, it’s time to get these replaced by an Everest Mechanical professional.
8: Swamp Cooler Start Ups
Swamp coolers or “evaporative coolers” are easy to operate but do require maintenance at the beginning and end of each season.
We recommend having a professional start up your cooler(s) to ensure your system is properly ready for summer. This helps avoid unnecessary repairs and ensures that all the proper parts are replaced each year.
Remember to take care of your home AC and other system maintenance service now, so you’ll be worry-free in Spring and Summer!
Want more information call Everest Mechanical today!
The Everest Mechanical Team wishes you a great Spring and Summer!