As you transition from the cold winter to the much warmer summertime, it’s time to think about all those maintenance tasks around your business. One of the most important on your list should be performing maintenance on your cooling system to get it ready to take on its long summer run. Below are some of our best tips for ensuring that your commercial HVAC system is properly prepped for the summer.
Schedule Professional HVAC Service
An absolute must when it comes to prepping your commercial HVAC unit for summer is to schedule professional maintenance services. This helps to ensure that your system gets properly serviced and is working at its most efficient going into the summer months. Additionally, most commercial HVAC manufacturers require that you have your system serviced annually by a licensed professional to keep your warranty coverage active. Even skipping this professional service for just one year can void the entire warranty on your system and leave you susceptible to paying for repairs out of pocket.
As air is circulated throughout your building, it moves through your metal ventilation pipes. Any airborne particles, such as dust and debris, can become stuck in your ducting. This can drastically reduce the indoor air quality inside of your building. One of the best things that you can do in the springtime is to get your ductwork completely cleaned. This will help to prevent mold growth, bacteria, and other build-up inside of your ventilation system.
Replace Used Air Filters
Another necessary preparation task is to replace all the used air filters on your HVAC system. Throughout the winter months, a lot of dust, debris, other airborne particles get trapped in these air filters. When they reach the end of their lifespan, it becomes harder for your HVAC system to force air through them. For this reason, it’s best to make it a habit to replace all the air filters on your HVAC system in the spring. This ensures that your indoor air quality remains high and that your HVAC system isn’t overworking to circulate treated air throughout your building.
Clean Outdoor Condenser Units
One of the best ways to extend the life of your commercial HVAC system is to regularly clean its outdoor condenser units. Outside hazards like leaves and other debris can get stuck to the outdoor cabinet of your condenser units. This can block the coils and vents from fresh air and make your system work less efficiently. It’s a good idea to take off the cabinet covers for your outdoor condenser units and give them a good washing. Make sure that the inside of all your condenser units are free from debris like leaves.
Clear Out Drain Lines
As your cooling system works to remove heat from the air inside of your building, it also removes excess humidity. This humidity will drop off the evaporator coils and down into the condensate drain. Over time, it’s not uncommon for algae, hard water scaling, and other pollutants to end up partially or fully blocking your condensate drain. When this happens, water will overflow into your building. It’s best to use an appropriate cleaning solution to remove any blockage in the condensate drain and any build-up within the drain lines. You want to run some water down the drain and through the drain lines to ensure that they’re draining appropriately
Inspect Your Thermostats
One of the most crucial components of your entire commercial HVAC system is your thermostat. These help to tell your system when to kick on and off to keep your business comfortable for those inside. Now’s a good time to switch all of your thermostats over to cooling mode and program in appropriate temperature settings. If any of your thermostats are low on batteries, now is the time to change them. Additionally, you may want to consider upgrading to new smart thermostats that can help you cash in on huge efficiency benefits.
Inspect Refrigerant Lines
In order for your cooling system to work adequately, it needs to have refrigerant moving freely through copper lines in and out of your building. It’s a good idea to check over these copper lines to see if they have become damaged in any way. A dent, hole, or other sign of damage can potentially allow refrigerant to leak out of your system. This can be dangerous and prevent your HVAC system from working appropriately. If you do notice any damage to your system, it’s best to contact an HVAC professional to assess the damage further.
Inspect Any Exposed Ducting
Another great task to add to your springtime commercial HVAC maintenance checklist is to inspect any exposed ducting. Over time, the constant expansion and contraction of your ducting alongside regular wear and tear can cause joints to be pulled apart and gaps to develop. If you notice that there are any gaps in your exposed ducting, you’ll want to remedy them before running your system. You can do this by utilizing foil tape to reattach joints to one another and to cover up any gaps. Make sure that you’re utilizing a foil tape that is specifically designed for HVAC application, as it will need to expand and contract with the natural movement of the ducting.
Lubricate Your Air Dampers
Typically located at the top of a building, there are several different boxes that help to generate your cooling system’s power. In each one of these boxes will be a small flap called an air damper. Over time, natural aging, as well as other factors, can prevent your dampers from fully opening. This will limit your system’s efficiency. Now is a good time to lubricate those air dampers to help ensure that you’re getting maximum efficiency for your commercial HVAC system.
Consider Ductwork Sealing
If your ductwork is over 10 years old, it likely has developed some gaps, leaks, and other damage that can reduce the efficient delivery of cooled air throughout your building. The springtime is the perfect time of year to have your ductwork professionally sealed up. This will help to remove those gaps and ensure that you’re getting optimal efficiency out of your entire system.
Give It a Test Run
Lastly, you want to give your cooling system an adequate test run to make sure that everything’s working appropriately. You should never wait until you need to be using your system in order to test it for the first time of the year. Let your cooling system run through a couple of cycles. Make sure that you’re on high alert for any unusual noises, odors, or anything else that could indicate there’s a problem with your cooling system. By doing this test right now, you can help to fix any issues that may crop up before you need to be constantly using your cooling system.
Trusted Commercial HVAC Services
Beyer Mechanical provides trusted commercial HVAC repair, installation and maintenance services for the entire San Antonio, TX area. We’re also here for all of your HVAC construction and design needs. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment.