Spring Tune Up for your central AC

Provided for lurkers and experts alike. How to do the early spring maintenance on your central AC system.
A Home Owner's guide to spring AC tune up by Hugh G. Lee Comical, guest editor for the HVAC Lampoon (Published twice a year, on 10% post consumer recycled HTML)
(On the other hand, maybe a lot of laughs for the pros?)
As usual, the advice is worth what you paid for it. No responsibility is assumed for any troubles you encounter by using this advice.
You will be able to achieve a reduction in energy usage by proper maintenance and servicing of your system. The following actions are recommended:
1. Examine the fan belts that drive fans on the condenser and house air mover. If they are frayed or worn, replace them. Adjust the tension to allow 1/2" to 3/4" depression with moderate force. Do not over tighten, as that would injure the shaft bearings. If your installation has an adjustable pulley on the air mover, be sure the belt is on the smallest diameter to mover the maximum amount of air. While you're at it, replace the circuit breaker for the outside unit. They are cheap, and this will cut down on accidental trips.
2. Clean or replace the house fan filter at least monthly. A plugged filter will retard the flow of cold air. If it isn't retarding the air flow, it might be retarding the owner. Be sure to use good quality filters, the cheap ones wouldn't catch a sparrow, much less a dust particle.
3. Clean the coils with a commercial coil cleaner. This product is available at refrigeration supply houses and can be applied with a garden insecticide sprayer. Follow the suppliers instructions. Any parts house will be happy to sell you the good stuff. Be sure and get three or four pounds of that freezon stuff. Get the powder kind, and mix it with water yourself. Don't ever get liquid freezon, it's far too expensive. Just spray the cleaner on, and let it dry overnight before using the air conditioner.
4. Straighten all of the evaporator and condenser coil fins with a small pointed stick or a special plastic fin comb. Bent fins do not allow proper air distribution. Be sure to also flatten out any kinks in the copper tubing. Don't worry if it hisses a little when you do this. Make sure your thermostat is level, and replace it while you're at it.
5. Oil all motor and shaft bearings with 5 to 10 drops of lightweight machine oil applied in the oil holes near the shaft supports. Rotate the shaft to assure that the oil is distributed over the shaft. Be sure the rotation is smooth. If hard rough spots exist, the bearings need replacement. This is especially important for the compressor. If the compressor is a sealed unit, drill a couple 1/4 inch holes in the top, and squirt in a bunch of 30 weight non detergent. Patch the holes with duct tape. Label the duct tape with a Sharpie magic marker, so you don't have to drill new oil holes next year.
6. If the condenser is at ground level, be sure no vegetation or foreign material is restricting the air flow path. If possible, shade the condenser with trees or bushes, which will improve the cooling efficiency by elimination of direct sunshine. Be sure that your outdoor unit doesn't get wet, by wrapping it in black plastic, and sealing it with a lot of duct tape.
7. Be sure the suction or cool line from the condenser to the compressor is insulated with snap-on urethane or other high R-value insulation. If the insulation is cracked or missing, you could be losing up to 4% of your energy efficiency.
8. Measure the temperature difference between the warm return air entering the evaporator coil and the coil discharge air into the house with two thermometers. The temperature difference should be a minimum of 12 F to 16 F for satisfactory efficiency, with even higher temperatures preferred. If this test shows a low temperature difference, have a serviceman check the refrigerant. The system may need recharging, or perhaps the compressor is malfunctioning. If the system needs recharging, you can do it yourself by mixing powder Freezon, and using a small funnel to pour it directly into the system.
If have performed all of these checks, there is little more than you can do. Your only hope now to reduce your energy bills is try to reduce the heat load on the building and raise the thermostat as high as comfort allows. Keep your windows closed. Finally, don't cool the house when no one is home. A timer can activate the air conditioning just before you arrive. Turn up the thermostat if you are planning to be home.
Above all, knowing and doing all these things will reduce your need for expensive HVAC company service calls. Minor maintenance will prevent major headaches.
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So obviously you distribute this information to all your customers - but don't they wake-up to it after a while and use someone else? You need to do it with graphics for those who don't read....
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And, what might make you think that?
"New Directions In Building Services (Australia)"
wrote in message

: > : So obviously you distribute this information to all your customers - but : don't they wake-up to it after a while and use someone else? You need to do : it with graphics for those who don't read.... : :
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I think you need to be a LURKER and stop posting shit that is going to end up hurting someone!!!!!

I think stating "will achieve reduction" is a stretch.

Yeah, get them hands in them pulleys and shit. Never mind whether the person has experience with such items. Hell, a couple missing fingers are nothing.
And get that adjustable pulley set so the fan is moving the maximum amount of air... forget about PROPER air flow!

Why not call an Electrician and change out the whole panel??????

Yeah, get those 3M, DirtDevil, ArmorHammer pleated filters in those 1" filter racks! That will help those allergies. Forget the air flow, remember, you already adjusted the pulley for maximum air flow. Oh, wait, you say you have a direct drive blower motor. Don't worry then, no belt, no slippage, just get a spare motor for when the extra amperage/temperature cooks the motor windings.

Might as well paint the condenser so it matches the home too. That way when it don't work, it'll at least blend in with the surroundings!

Level it, then replace it... nice, this is how Chris does everything... TWICE, as he always screws it up the first time.

Do you think they will oil the compressor?????

Just buy a cover and leave it installed year around.

When they get done, they'll be lucky if that's all they lose!

Plain stupidity.

Use timer and "turn up" the thermostat "if you are planning to be home".
Sure, cool the home for your pets!!

If you follow the advice in the previous post, you'll be lucky if you only end up needing a new air conditioning system. At least it can be replaced, your fingers, hands, eyes, etc... well, you got to be a red neck, if you think this advice is worthy.
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It's too late for that.......................
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That is wrong, misleading and exists only in fantasy land.
The rest is a poor attempt at witty banter by someone who doesn't really get it, yet has chronic dilutions of grandeur.
Deflection may have no effect on this thread... better go right to patronizing.
-zero
p.s. (It's OK, no one in the group even suspects the patronizing)
<snip nothing to talk about>
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Stormy is a troll. Move right on past his posts.
--
Respectfully, Bob

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On Sun, 22 Apr 2007 15:35:23 -0400, "Stormin Mormon"

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