How to Protect Your Air Conditioner From Debris

Your outdoor air conditioning unit is subject to falling leaves and other debris on a daily basis. If any of the debris gets into your system, it can clog the drains and filters, cause rust, and increase the risk of insects.

Eliminating this debris can help your AC run more efficiently and prolong the life of your system. The good news is that it only takes a little bit of preparation to protect your AC. Here are the four things you should do this spring to ensure your AC keeps your cool this summer:

Clean Your AC Unit

For most air conditioners, you should be able to remove the side panel to see the interior. Sweep out any debris including leaves and grass clippings that have found their way inside the unit. Clear the area around your AC unit by leaving at least two feet of clearance from the unit’s base. Once thoroughly cleaned, reattach the panel and wash down the unit with a hose using a low-pressure setting. This will help remove any build-up from dirt, dust, and other debris.

Trim Foilage

Warmer weather not only means increased use of your air conditioner, but it also means the growing season for your grass, trees, and other foliage. When your shrubs and plants grow within two feet of the unit, trim them back. This will ensure proper airflow, allowing your unit to run more efficiently and keep your home at the desired temperature.

Clean the Drain Line

If your AC unit’s drain pan is full of water, the drain line is likely clogged. To clean the drain line, turn off the power to your AC unit and check for any cracks or leaks in the tubing. If any are found, have the pieces replaced. Next, remove the water from the drain pan with a wet/dry shop vac and dispose of it. Clear any debris that could be blocking the drain as well as the outdoor drain outlet. Then remove the PVC cap from the drainpipe. Using a small wire brush, clear the clog and debris. Once cleared, mix cup bleach with one cup water and pour it into the drainpipe to remove any additional debris such as mold or mildew.
When you change your air filter, it’s a good idea to check the drain pan to help prevent any potential issues.

Use a Leaf Guard Cover

Invest in a leaf guard cover, especially if your AC unit has a tendency to collect a lot of debris. The cover serves a filter and will prevent grass clippings, leaves, and other debris from falling into the unit. Since the cover is breathable mesh, you’re able to keep it on while your AC is in use to ensure protection and comfort year-round. Although using a leaf cover requires less maintenance, it’s still recommended to hose down your AC unit’s exterior on occasion.

If you need a professional to check your HVAC, or you’re in the market for air duct cleaning, repair, or replacement services in Tampa, St. Petersburg, and the surrounding area, call the experts at Air Rescue at 813-358-3431. Since 1946, our family-owned business has been providing superior service at unbeatable prices, offering heat and air conditioning repair services, new HVAC system installations, and more for homes and businesses. Schedule your service visit today, and we’re confident that you’ll make us our HVAC company for life.