How To Prepare Your AC For Extreme Weather

July 1, 2024

How To Prepare Your AC For Extreme Weather

As the seasons change and the weather becomes more unpredictable, it’s essential to ensure your air conditioner is ready to handle extreme conditions. Proper air conditioner maintenance not only improves efficiency but also extends the lifespan of your unit.

Whether it’s the sweltering heat of summer or unexpected heat waves, a well-maintained AC system can keep your home comfortable and safe.

In this blog post, we will guide you through the crucial steps to prepare your AC for extreme weather, ensuring optimal performance when you need it most with the help of experienced HVAC contractors.

The Importance Of Air Conditioner Maintenance

Before diving into the specifics, let’s discuss why air conditioner maintenance is crucial. Regular maintenance helps in:

  • Improving Efficiency: A well-maintained AC runs more efficiently, reducing energy consumption and lowering your utility bills.
  • Extending Lifespan: Proper care can extend the life of your air conditioner, saving you from premature replacements.
  • Enhancing Air Quality: Clean filters and components contribute to better indoor air quality, which is essential for your family’s health.
  • Preventing Breakdowns: Routine checks can identify and fix minor issues before they become major problems, avoiding costly repairs during peak seasons.

Given these benefits, it’s clear that regular maintenance from an experienced HVAC contractor is necessary to keep your system running smoothly.

Step-By-Step Guide To Preparing Your AC For Extreme Weather

1. Inspect And Clean The Filters

One of the most critical aspects of air conditioner maintenance is keeping the filters clean. Dirty filters can obstruct airflow, making your unit work harder and less efficiently. Here’s how you can handle this:

  • Monthly Check: Inspect the filters at least once a month. During extreme weather periods, consider checking them more frequently.
  • Cleaning Or Replacement: Depending on your filter type, either clean or replace them. Disposable filters should be replaced, while reusable filters can be cleaned with water and a mild detergent.

2. Check And Clean The Coils

Both the evaporator and condenser coils are crucial for your AC’s performance. Over time, these coils collect dirt, which reduces their efficiency.

  • Annual Cleaning: Clean the coils at least once a year. This process can be complex, so consulting with a professional HVAC contractor is advisable.
  • Clearing Debris: Ensure there’s no debris around the outdoor condenser unit. Leaves, grass, and dirt can obstruct airflow and reduce efficiency.

3. Inspect The Thermostat

Your thermostat plays a significant role in maintaining the desired temperature. Ensuring it functions correctly is vital for extreme weather preparedness.

  • Calibration Check: Verify that the thermostat is calibrated correctly. An incorrect calibration can lead to inefficient cooling.
  • Upgrade To Programmable Thermostat: If you haven’t already, consider upgrading to a programmable thermostat. This allows you to set temperature schedules, improving efficiency and comfort.

4. Examine The Ductwork

Leaky or poorly insulated ducts can lead to significant energy loss, making your AC work harder and less effectively.

  • Visual Inspection: Check for visible signs of leaks or damage in the ductwork. Look for disconnected joints or holes.
  • Professional Assessment: For a thorough inspection, it’s best to hire an HVAC contractor. They can use specialized equipment to detect and seal leaks, ensuring optimal airflow.

5. Test The System

Before extreme weather hits, it’s crucial to test your AC system to ensure it’s operating correctly.

  • Run A Full Cycle: Turn on the system and let it run through a full cooling cycle. Listen for unusual noises and check if the air coming out is cold.
  • Monitor Performance: Pay attention to how long it takes to reach the desired temperature and whether it maintains that temperature consistently.

6. Schedule A Professional Maintenance Visit

While DIY maintenance is essential, nothing beats a comprehensive check-up by a professional. A certified HVAC technician can perform tasks that might be beyond the scope of a homeowner, such as:

  • Refrigerant Level Check: Ensuring the refrigerant levels are correct is crucial for efficient cooling.
  • Electrical Component Inspection: A technician can inspect and tighten electrical connections, which is vital for preventing potential failures.
  • Component Lubrication: Proper lubrication of moving parts reduces friction and wear, enhancing efficiency.

Preparing For Specific Extreme Weather Conditions


During heatwaves, your AC system will be working overtime. To prepare for this:

  • Pre-Cool Your Home: Set your thermostat a few degrees lower before the heatwave hits. This gives your system a head start.
  • Use Ceiling Fans: Complement your AC with ceiling fans to improve air circulation and reduce the load on your system.
  • Close Blinds And Curtains: Keep your home cooler by blocking out direct sunlight.

Thunderstorms And High Winds

Storms can pose a risk to your outdoor unit. Here’s how to protect it:

  • Secure The Unit: Ensure the outdoor unit is securely mounted. High winds can damage a loose unit.
  • Install A Surge Protector: Thunderstorms can cause power surges that damage your AC. A surge protector can prevent this.

Also Read: Top Tips For Maximizing The Lifespan Of Your Air Conditioning Unit

About Pro West Heating And Air Conditioning

At Pro West Heating and Air Conditioning, we pride ourselves on providing top-notch HVAC services to keep your home comfortable throughout the year. With years of experience and a team of certified technicians, we offer comprehensive maintenance, repair, and installation services tailored to meet your specific needs.

Whether you’re preparing your air conditioner for extreme weather or need emergency repairs, we’re here to help. Trust us to keep your HVAC system running smoothly, efficiently, and reliably. Contact us today for more information.