3 Steps To Properly Winterize Your Air Conditioner

Summer is officially over, which means you won't be using your air conditioner again. If you want to make sure that it's ready for use when you turn it back on next summer, you need to take care of some winterization right now. Leaving your air conditioner exposed to the elements without the proper preparation may leave you without a working AC unit when the warm weather finally returns. Here are three steps you should take to get your air conditioner ready for winter.

Clear It

Before you can put your air conditioner to bed for the winter, you need to make sure that the surrounding area is clean and free of debris. If the area around your air conditioning unit is cluttered with debris, you're providing an open invitation for pests to set up housekeeping over the winter. To reduce the chances of pest infestation, take the time to clear the area of things like weeds, bushes, tree branches, etc.

Clean It

After you have the surrounding area cleared, you'll need to clean your air conditioning unit. Begin by using a shop vacuum to clean the exterior coils on the unit. Next, turn the power off to the unit and unscrew the top grill of the air conditioner. Carefully lift the fan out and set it on the side of the air conditioner. Use a high pressure spray nozzle to thoroughly clean the inside of the air conditioner. Continue spraying until the water runs clear. This is a sign that all of the dirt has been removed from the coils. Carefully place the fan back inside the unit and replace the top grill. Allow the air conditioner to thoroughly dry before proceeding to the next step.

Cover It Up

Once the air conditioner is clean and dry, you'll be ready to cover it up for the winter. Covering your air conditioner will protect it from the elements, and help keep pests out. Begin by placing a piece of plywood on top of the unit. Next, cover the entire unit with a vinyl AC cover. Finally, secure the cover to the air conditioner using rope or bungee cords.

Now that winter is here, take the time to get your air conditioner prepared for the cold weather. Proper winterization will ensure that your air conditioner is ready to keep you cool as soon as the hot temperatures return. If you notice any problems with your air conditioner while you're prepping it for winter—such as loose wires or damaged coils—be sure to have those issues repaired as soon as possible. 

For assistance, talk to a professional like Mr. Reliable Plumbing & Heating.