7333 Oak Ridge Hwy Knoxville, TN 37931

Preparing Your HVAC System for Summer: A Seasonal Checklist

Follow these HVAC tune-up tips to maximize efficiency and ensure worry-free cooling when summer heating hits.

The warm weather is finally here in Knoxville! But is your home's heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system ready to keep you cool and comfortable all summer long?

After running your heating system hard all winter, key HVAC components can get quite the workout. From dust buildup to loose electrical connections, cold-weather wear and tear can leave your air conditioner ill-prepared for summertime cooling demands.

That's why it's so important to show your home's HVAC system some love in late spring. With a little preventative maintenance, you can restore peak performance and catch any Issues before they disrupt your home's cooling. At Keith Powell Heating and Cooling, we recommend a comprehensive spring tune-up checklist.

Starting Outside

Clean the Condenser Unit

You should clear away any leaves, dirt, grass clippings or debris that may have collected around or inside your outdoor condenser unit over the winter. Use a shop vac and brush (never a pressure washer) to gently remove buildup on the fins and fan components.

Once cleaned off, make sure there's adequate clearance - at least 2-3 feet clearance on all sides of the condenser. Nearby plants or objects obstructing airflow reduce the unit's efficiency.

My neighbor Howard is meticulous about cleaning his condenser every spring. Says he can tell a big difference in how hard the unit has to work to keep his home cool after a proper cleaning!

Check System Controls

Locate the power disconnect box near the condenser unit and ensure it's securely closed and switched to "ON." Also inspect exterior wires, conduit pipes, and line connections for cracks, fraying or damage from winter weather.

It's easy to forget about these components until they malfunction. Better to make a quick check and repair anything of concern before firing up the A/C for summer.

Lastly, replace the batteries in any outdoor thermostats or comfort sensors connected to your HVAC system. You'll want all control components fully functional for reliable cooling performance.

Moving Inside

Change Air Filters

You should replace HVAC air filters once every 1-3 months for optimal airflow. Clogged, dirty filters make your system work harder, leading to higher energy bills and potential breakdowns.

Pro Tip: Purchase filters in multi-packs and set calendar reminders for tracking when replacements are due. You'll save money in the long run and extend your HVAC's lifespan.

Clear Vents & Ducts

Once the filters are swapped, give all air vents and return grilles a thorough vacuuming. Built-up dust, pet hair and debris will blow straight back into your home's air supply if not removed. You should also have your ductwork professionally inspected and cleaned every 3-5 years.

My dad taught me this preventative maintenance lesson early: "You don't want your grandkids breathing what came out of our ducts that first summer after we bought this place!" Out of a kid's mouth but wise words.

Thermostat Check

If you have an older analog thermostat, this is a good opportunity to replace it with an affordable digital or smart programmable model. Making this simple upgrade can boost comfort and reduce cooling costs by automatically adjusting temps when you're away.

For existing programmable and smart thermostats, change any backup batteries and ensure system schedule is still accurate for your household's current cooling needs.

Consider Professional HVAC Servicing

While the checklist items above help maximize HVAC performance, your system will eventually require more thorough professional maintenance and tuning. At Keith Powell Heating and Cooling, we recommend scheduling a preventative service visit once every year or two to fully prepare for summer cooling.

Our certified HVAC technicians follow detailed multi-point inspections for your specific cooling equipment. We'll carefully test system controls and operation sequences, check all electrical connections, measure refrigerant levels, clean the indoor evaporator coils, lubricate motors and components, and make any minor adjustments to restore peak efficiency.

This level of comprehensive service catches small issues before major breakdowns. We'll also advise you on any potential risks or upcoming repair needs to plan for down the road.

Don't wait until that first blast of Tennessee humidity hits - schedule your Keith Powell Heating and Cooling HVAC tune-up today. With some basic DIY steps combined with our pro preventative care, you can rest easy knowing your system will keep your home incredibly cool and comfortable all summer long!