Summer HVAC Maintenance Checklist


Once the nice weather of Spring pushes memories of winter away, heating and air conditioning is usually the last thing on our mind. But as Summer temperatures continue to rise it is a good time for an HVAC inspection and maintenance.

Our handy summer HVAC maintenance checklist helps you get your air conditioning unit ready for the season. We have also chosen several summer HVAC tips to improve energy efficiency, lower home cooling bills, and even reduce summer allergy symptoms.


Before you Turn On Your AC for the First Time

If you have central air conditioning, you will need to tackle these three things before powering up your AC unit for the year.


  1. Replace Air Filters

Cleaning or replacing your HVAC system’s air filter regularly is one of the best things you can do to guarantee its effectiveness and functionality. Depending on the type of air filter, the air quality, and whether you have pets, change your filter every 30 to 90 days. Over time, buildup starts to impact how efficiently your unit operates to cool your house. Check the filter before turning on your air conditioner.


  1. Clean Condenser Coils

The air conditioner’s evaporator coil and condenser coil collect dirt over their months and years of service. A clean filter prevents the evaporator coil from soiling quickly. In time, however, the evaporator coil will still collect dirt. This dirt reduces airflow and insulates the coil, reducing its ability to absorb heat. To avoid this problem, check your evaporator coil every year and clean it as necessary.


  1. Inspect Refrigerant Lines

Check the refrigerant lines for any signs of damage, leaks, or insulation deterioration. Leaking refrigerant can lead to decreased cooling performance and potential system damage. If you notice any issues, contact a qualified HVAC technician for inspection and repair.


  1. Check Thermostat Settings

Verify that your thermostat is set to the correct cooling mode and that the temperature settings are comfortable for your household. Consider upgrading to a programmable or smart thermostat for increased energy efficiency and convenience.


  1. Clean Air Vents and Registers

Over time, dust and debris build up in your home’s air ducts. As the buildup gets thicker, less cooled air will be able to push through the ducts and enter your living spaces. If the cooled air can’t get into your living areas, the thermostat will keep triggering the air conditioner to cycle. This adds stress to the cooling system and increases your utility bills. Ideally, you should inspect the air filters monthly and get them replaced every three months. Apart from this, if you’ve central air conditioning, you need to check the vents as well. Forgetting to clean the air vent covers or registers also decreases your AC efficiency. Once each month, remove the vent covers. Clean them with a soapy, soft cloth. Wipe them dry with a microfiber or cotton cloth before replacing them.


  1. Lubricate Moving Parts

Proper lubrication of moving parts, such as fan motors and bearings, reduces friction and extends the lifespan of your HVAC system. Consult your system’s manual or schedule professional maintenance to ensure all moving components are adequately lubricated.


  1. Test System Performance

Turn on your HVAC system and assess its performance. Check for unusual noises, odors, or fluctuations in temperature, which may indicate underlying issues. If you notice any abnormalities, contact an HVAC technician for diagnosis and repair.


  1. Schedule Professional Maintenance

As the weather begins to warm up and winter starts to die away, it is important to take a few preventative measures to protect your home through the warmer months when windows start to open and birds begin to sing. Air conditioner tune-ups can seem like a frivolous thing to have done for someone who is unaware of their benefits and the importance. But the truth is, you will stop problems before they get out of hand. And while it may seem like you’re paying extra money for the tune-up, you’re actually saving on repairs, replacements, and energy costs by having it done.


Summer Energy Efficiency Tips

When it comes to keeping your air conditioning costs down, it pays to use every tool in your toolkit. Here are energy efficiency tips to reduce costs associated with your AC this summer.


  • Use Window Treatments

Use curtains, drapes or other window treatment options to reduce the impact of sunlight on the heat of your home. Be sure to close the curtains before you leave for the day to keep warm light out.


  • Remove Humidity

Air conditioners remove humidity every time they run, but always use your bathroom ventilation fan to quickly remove humidity after a bath or shower. This can help keep indoor humidity levels low and more comfortable.


  • Upgrade to An Energy Efficient Air Conditioner

Paying higher upfront costs for the most efficient unit possible (SEER 14 or higher) makes sense in hot climates since the initial investment will be paid back in energy savings over time. It makes less sense in cooler climates.


  • Install a Smart Thermostat

To maximize your air conditioner’s efficiency, consider installing a smart thermostat that lets your cooling system do the work for you. A smart thermostat allows you to schedule temperature changes based on the time of day and adjust the thermostat even when you are away from home. A programmable device connects to your home’s Wi-Fi network and you can control it via a mobile app or voice assistant devices.


  • Put Your Thermostat In the Right Place

Thermostat placement can have a significant impact on how your air conditioner functions throughout the day and thus, how much you’re paying for monthly air conditioning bills. A thermostat on a wall that receives a lot of heat from a window will be triggered to go on more frequently. Placing your thermostat in a cooler place, on the other hand, will ensure your air conditioner is not operating more than necessary.


  • Check the Insulation

Insulation works by resisting the flow of heat and acts as a barrier against heat flow. It keeps your house cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Insulation slows this heat flow, so your heating and cooling system requires less operation to maintain your desired temperature, which saves you money. Insulation not only contributes to energy efficiency but also provides several other benefits.


  • Turn Those Fans On

Ceiling fans circulate the air in a room, helping to create a cooling effect. They use far less energy than an air conditioner and can help your AC unit by redistributing the cool air it produces. Ceiling fans are also relatively inexpensive to purchase and install, making them an excellent investment for you to save money on bills.

In the summer, use the ceiling fan in the counterclockwise direction. While standing directly under the ceiling fan you should feel a cool breeze. The airflow produced creates a wind-chill effect, making you “feel” cooler. In the winter, reverse the motor and operate the ceiling fan at low speed in the clockwise direction. This produces a gentle updraft, which forces warm air near the ceiling down into the occupied space. Remember to adjust your thermostat when using your ceiling fan — additional energy and dollar savings could be realized with this simple step!


What Is the Ideal Summer Thermostat Setting?

No one likes sweating while relaxing at home, just as no one likes to wear a sweater and scarf in July. Setting your thermostat to the ideal temperature in the summer will go a long way toward keeping everyone comfortable while preventing your energy bill from skyrocketing.

Many Riverside County residents find their own balance between energy use and comfortable cold air. These tips help you know the temperatures to choose when turning your thermostat up or down for efficiency and comfort, as well as how to adjust and set thermostats for the perfect balance.


  • When You Are Home

76° is a good target for your thermostat setting when you are at home. If you are used to having your home at 72°, that likely sounds too hot. Your family will likely not protest as much if you increase the thermostat setting by 1 degree each day. That allows everyone to acclimate to the higher temperature.


  • When You Are Away

80° is the recommended setting when you are away from home. For the 8 hours that you are at work, raising your air conditioner by 5° can save 5-10% in your energy consumption.


Summer Heating & Cooling Energy Savings

Keep energy costs low this summer with heating & cooling tips that give your HVAC system a break and help them operate more efficiently.

  • Take advantage of cooler outdoor temperatures overnight by opening windows and turning off your cooling system. Be sure to shut them the following morning before your cooling system comes back on.
  • Take this time to reprogram your thermostat. Consider setting your thermostat for maximum energy savings this season. As the temperatures rise, your home is already being naturally heated. You can save money by reprogramming your thermostat to a lower setting. The less you use your furnace in the summer, the more you will save on next month’s heating bill! You can set your thermostat to a comfortable temperature, one that will keep you comfortable with the scorching Southern California temperatures.
  • Reduce the heating load in your home by using curtains and blinds to stop the sun from heating up your living areas. Your air conditioner will not have to overwork to counteract the heat gain.
  • Use ceiling fans to stay cool without increasing air conditioner use. Set fans counterclockwise to benefit from the wind chill effect they produce. Shut them off when not in the room to save energy.
  • Reduce heat load in the home by limiting use of heat-producing appliances. Keep lights off when unneeded, switch to energy efficient low heat bulbs. Use daylighting strategies for natural light versus using lamps and fixtures.
  • Cook outside on the grill when possible versus using the oven or stove to limit heat gain in the home.
  • Use exhaust fans in kitchens and bathrooms to pull excess heat generated by appliances and hot water use out of the home. This reduces the heat gain inside so your air conditioner does not have to work harder cooling down your home.
  • Check your air filter monthly and change it as needed if that is sooner than what is recommended by the manufacturer. A clean filter allows air to flow through your system and your home, reducing the amount of energy your heating & cooling system expends moving it.



Final Thoughts

If your air conditioner is still not running properly and you are not experiencing better air conditioning efficiency after completing the above tips, it might be time to call a professional service technician at Aire-Tech. Our highly trained and skilled technicians will check your unit or units for proper air flow and coolant levels as well as clean internal coils and perform other repairs if required.

If your system needs repair or inspection before spring or summer, call us on 951-926-1002. You can also visit our Contact page and complete the contact form.