It’s the first hot day of summer. The sun is bright, and the air is sticky and humid. You know it’s going to be a scorcher, so it’s finally time to turn on the AC. Instead of fresh, cool air, you get some noises that just don’t sound right and now you need to call an HVAC technician.

Your air conditioner needs year-round maintenance. While some of the issues below may only arise when you’re using your AC, there are other things you can do through the winter months to make sure that your air conditioner is running smoothly the first time you turn it on in the summer.

These 5 tips for year-round maintenance will help keep your air conditioner running for longer and reduce costs. Wear and tear can reduce the energy efficiency of your air conditioner, so good maintenance should save you money.

If you want to keep your AC running at top performance, check out this handy guide and stay on top of seasonal maintenance.

1)Cleaning Air Ducts

Cleaning Air Ducts
Cleaning your air ducts is necessary to keep your air conditioner and furnace running smoothly. Dust and debris that accumulates in your ducts can worsen wear and tear on your HVAC system, including your furnace and central air conditioning system. Dust and debris can wreak havoc on belts and motors too.

Having your air ducts cleaned can also help if you or any of your family members suffer from allergies. It’s important to clear out the dust and mold that can grow in your air ducts. Cleaning your air ducts will improve the air quality throughout your household.

2)Replacing Damaged Coils & Burnt Motors

Damaged coils are among the most serious issues that your air conditioner can face. Debris, impact, and corrosion can all damage a coil, and you will likely need to replace it.

The same goes for a burnt motor. Motors burn out slowly, over time, rather than in one dramatic flame out. An older fan motor will move more slowly and work less effectively, getting worse with time.

3)Clearing Blockages

Clearing Blockages
Blockages within the AC unit keep the cool air from flowing into your home or prevent the exhaust of hot air. Accumulated debris and particles can cause the condenser unit to fail. One common problem is a blockage caused by metal flakes from the condenser itself. A blockage will often result in the condenser unit breaking down completely. Good maintenance can prevent a blockage.

4)Protecting Outdoor Condenser Units

Protecting Outdoor Condenser Units
Keep external debris out of your condenser unit by covering it with plywood or plastic over the winter. You’re going to want to keep the snow from getting inside, as well as autumn leaves and fallen tree branches or other debris.

5)Fixing Leaks

Fixing Leaks
Leaks can deplete your AC’s supply of refrigerant, preventing your central air system from effectively cooling down your home. Leaks spring up due to faulty tubes and seals, as tubes can rupture, become brittle, and break apart.

To keep up with good AC maintenance, don’t wait until summer to get everything done. The colder months are a great time to inspect AC units and cle