If there’s one thing you don’t want going out on you when you’re in the throes of summer, it’s your AC. Whether you use your home’s air conditioning system regularly or not, these maintenance tips will help you keep your system in great working order when the heat wave comes. 1. Start with your thermostat. When was the last time you replaced your thermostat? If you’ve just moved into your new home, what do you know about it? If it’s been awhile, you might be working with an outdated model. In that case, it’s worth looking into springing for a programmable, energy-efficient thermostat. Most can be controlled remotely from your phone for ultimate savings. 2. Look out for wear on exposed ductwork. Worn ductwork is one of the biggest culprits for cooling loss in your home. Look for visible signs of damage and wear. 3. Check the flow of your air vents. You never know what might be blocking airflow, from furniture to curtains to your child’s toys. Walk room to room and be sure that all the air vents are free of obstructions. We promise it’ll make a difference! 4. Make sure your drain line isn’t clogged. Mounted above your furnace, you should see a drain near the cooling coil. This can become clogged with dirt, dust and debris over time. You can be sure that your drain line isn’t clogged by flushing a cup of bleach followed by a gallon of water down it. 5. Replace your air filter. Changing out your air filter is a super simple fix that will make a huge difference in indoor air quality and flow. Your filter should be changed every three months at a minimum, and more like once a month during seasons that necessitate heavy A/C usage. 6. Check your circuits. Look over your home’s electrical circuits to ensure that the connections are on and in working order. 7. Head outside to check the condenser unit. Your A/C unit’s outdoor equipment is just as important as its indoor system. First, make sure that no foliage is touching your unit, and remember not to make plans for any gardening in its vicinity. It’s just not worth it since plants can cause rusting, blockages and other damage. You’ll next want to make sure that refrigerant lines are insulated. If the insulation looks worn, you’ll need to hire an HVAC professional to replace it. The same goes for outdoor electrical wiring—when in doubt, hire out. Once you’ve completed these seven steps, you can turn your A/C on to a comfortable temperature and wait for it to begin cooling your home. Be sure to head back outside to listen to the condenser. It shouldn’t sound irregular and you should feel warm air blowing out the top. Allow your air conditioning to run for about 15 minutes to be sure everything is working smoothly. Call National Property Inspections to Schedule Your Inspection Your local NPI inspector can provide a full report on the condition of your HVAC system as well as the other major components of your home. Find an inspector near you for help making decisions about your most important investment—your home.