Professional vs. DIY Aircon Maintenance

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Proper maintenance of your air conditioning, whether reversible or not, is the guarantee of its proper functioning but also of its life span. It also means ensuring that the air conditioner plays its role in improving the quality of the air in the home. Indeed, in addition to its function of diffusing fresh air into the house in summer, or warm air in winter in the case of reversible air conditioning, the air conditioner helps to purify it.

On the contrary, without regular cleaning, the air conditioning can damage the ambient air. Review of the different methods for properly maintaining your air conditioning.

AC Maintenance by DIY

An air conditioning system must be maintained by regular cleaning, systematically before it is put into service and several times a year thereafter.

Filter cleaning

To maintain a wall-mounted air conditioning system or not, it is above all to take care of its filters, i.e. to clean them once or twice a month. You can do this yourself by removing the filters from the air conditioner. Be sure to disconnect it beforehand. With your vacuum cleaner, remove as much dust as possible from the filters. Then clean them with water mixed with soap. Once they are completely dry, replace them in the air conditioning unit. If you notice the poor condition of the filters, it is time to replace them with new ones.

Cleaning the different units of the air conditioner

An air conditioning system consists of an indoor unit placed in the house, and, for some models called "splist" air conditioning, also an outdoor unit.

The unit installed in the house is also at the mercy of dust. To carry out the necessary maintenance at least twice a year, switch off the appliance and clean all its components, paying particular attention to the air outlets, using a damp sponge but without household products that could damage them. Then wipe well with a dry cloth.

The maintenance of the outdoor unit is also essential because it is subject to hazards such as pollution, plants, etc. Cleaning it is particularly essential if you have not used your air conditioning for a long time. In any case, it is advisable to clean it at least twice a year. As with the maintenance of the indoor unit, remember to turn off your air conditioning before cleaning the outdoor unit. Start by removing anything that might have gotten stuck in this element such as leaves for example. Then drain the condensate, i. e. the water flows that result from the condensation of the water vapour contained in the air as it passes through a cold exchanger, from the tank in which it is collected and clean it with a damp cloth. The outdoor unit itself can be cleaned with a damp sponge.

Fixing a leak

Water leakage is the most common problem in air conditioning systems. Here again, you can fix this by yourself if the leak is not too large. After removing the cover from your unit, simply unclog the air conditioner exhaust hose with low-pressure water spray to prevent damage to the rest of the equipment.

Maintain your air conditioning yourself

To maintain your air conditioning yourself, you must therefore perform a quick but frequent maintenance. Especially if you use reversible air conditioning intensively to cool in summer and heat in winter. The system becomes clogged as it is used. So how do you maintain your own air conditioning?

During periods of heavy use, it is advisable to clean the air conditioning once or twice a month. This involves dismantling the central unit of the air conditioner in order to remove and clean the electrostatic filter by sucking up dirt or by passing it under warm water. Some air conditioning systems are equipped with a warning light that indicates that the filter is dirty and needs to be cleaned. For the carbon filter, it should be replaced with a new one twice a year according to the manufacturer's specifications. Its function is to purify and deodorize the air.

These tasks make it easy to take care of your air conditioning at home. If your air conditioning is connected to a ventilation system, do not hesitate to dust off the air vents and ducts. You can also clean the outdoor units to remove leaves and other dirt. Of course, this simple maintenance is carried out with the air conditioning off.

Here is the summary concerning the regular maintenance of the air conditioning depending on the model installed:

  • Routine maintenance of a mobile air conditioner (monobloc or split) is carried out with a change of the activated carbon filter, cleaning of the electrostatic filter and dust removal from the ventilation system. For this last point, the use of the vacuum cleaner is recommended to vacuum the dust from the suction grids in particular.
  • To maintain your fixed air conditioner yourself, you must remove and dust off the air filters. The rest of the maintenance of an air conditioning system must be carried out by a professional who will then check the tightness of the circuit and the pressure of the refrigerant fluid and carry out various maintenance and cleaning operations on the unit.

Landlords will be interested to know that the current maintenance of an air conditioning system is the responsibility of the tenant. Concerning the maintenance contract, it is the responsibility of the owner.

AC Maintenance by a Professional

In addition to regular self-service air conditioning maintenance, the use of a qualified installer is recommended for various maintenance, inspection and cleaning tasks. The cost of installing reversible air conditioning is very high, so this equipment must be taken care of and maintenance by a professional is the best method. Find out how to have your air conditioning serviced by a professional.

Mandatory control of air conditioning systems

The regulations require owners of reversible air conditioning systems or heat pumps with a cooling capacity greater than 12kW to have their installation inspected once every 5 years. It is the owner or the syndicate of co-ownership of the residence who has the obligation to make the request. This mandatory inspection by a qualified professional only concerns air conditioning and reversible heat pump installations:

  • With a cooling capacity greater than 12kW.
  • Containing more than 2 kg of fluid.

The tightness of the refrigerant circuit is then carefully checked to prevent any leakage of this liquid harmful to health and the environment.

What is the price of an air conditioning maintenance contract? Find out the cost and how to subscribe to an air conditioning maintenance contract.

Annual maintenance contract for air conditioning systems

In addition to the mandatory air conditioning inspection, it is recommended to take out an annual maintenance contract with a professional. By having your reversible air conditioning system serviced annually by a certified installer, you will avoid breakdowns and leaks.

The maintenance contract is the best solution to set up an annual audit of your entire installation. During this maintenance, the reversible air conditioning will be completely overhauled: cleaning, checking and testing for proper operation. Following his intervention, the professional then gives you an intervention form.

To summarize, subscribing to an air conditioning maintenance contract ensures you a periodic maintenance of your equipment. It is common to sign this contract as a fixed price when purchasing the air conditioning with the refrigeration installer. However, this contract is not mandatory but may be required to claim the air conditioning warranty from the manufacturer. The cost of a maintenance contract is added to the price of reversible air conditioning. It is also important to ensure that travel expenses are included in the proposed package. The annual rate for having your air conditioning maintained by a professional does not cost much compared to repairing a broken air conditioning system.

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