Home Maintenance Checklist for Spring Part OneHome Maintenance Checklist for Spring Part One
Spring is just around the corner and a maintenance check list for spring was the inspiration for this article but it grew and grew. If you start this list in the spring you might not be finished until fall. What I decided to do was divide it into three separate articles called Home Maintenance Checklist for Spring Part One, Home Maintenance Checklist for Spring Part Two, and Home Maintenance Checklist Part Three.
Parts One and Two will deal with the pressing matters that really should be taken care in the early spring and the third article will deal with items that should be addressed some time during each year.
- Air Conditioner(s)
It's a good idea to check out your air conditioner before you really need it during the hot summer months. Of course, there's not a whole lot the average homeowner can check.
Change the filter now if you have not already done so on a periodic basis. This will help assure that you'll get clean air in the house. It will also keep your unit working at peak efficiency.
Check the outside unit to make sure the condenser coil is free of obstructions and that the unit appears to be debris free.
Turn your air conditioner on. If it does not immediately come on, do not panic. The oil in many compressors accumulates in the bottom of the unit over the winter months and coagulates. Most compressors have a small coil that comes on to heat this oil and thin it when you first change the setting on your thermostat from heat to cool. However, it can take hours for the warm-up process to occur. Turn your air conditioner on and if it doesn't immediately start working, let it sit for awhile. It might begin working a few hours later.
Of course, if it never comes on, then chances are a breaker has tripped or possibly a fuse has blown or (worst case) your compressor is out. It's time to call the air conditioner repairman.
If it comes on, check to see that it's blowing cool air. Usually you can tell by feeling the air at a register. However, if you want to be precise, you can use a thermometer to measure the air at the return (where it enters the air conditioner) and at a register. At a register it should be at least 15 degrees (and as much as 20 degrees) cooler, indicating that the unit it working. If you do not get cool air, call the repairman.
Note: if you use a "swamp cooler," an evaporative cooling device, now is the time to check the water filters, clean them, and replace those that are damaged.
- Attic Fan
Many homes in hot climates use an attic fan in addition to an air conditioner. The attic fan helps draw in cooler outside air and evacuate hotter inside air in the attic. By cooling the attic, it can reduce the amount of work that an air conditioner has to do to cool your home.
Be sure your attic fan works. Usually there is a trip switch in the garage to test it. Also, be sure it comes on at an appropriate temperature (usually between 90 and 120 degrees). There is usually an automatic temperature switch located near the fan.
Be careful about going into the attic. If you're not sure of how to do this, get a professional to check it out. You could fall through the ceiling and get seriously injured or even killed.
This article continues in part 2.
More in Home Maintenance:
Home Maintenance Checklist for Spring Part Two.........Read More
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