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The Best & Worst Moments for DIY AC Repair

Being handy around the home is a valuable skill. Our hats off to every homeowner who takes responsibility for their home’s upkeep—there are some jobs that are just better to do yourself. However, we don’t think that’s true for every job.

For instance, your HVAC system is a complex assortment of machinery and interdependent components. We often take for granted that air conditioners are feats of modern engineering. Fixing an HVAC problem is more like diagnosing an illness than troubleshooting an appliance.

Here’s a list of things that homeowners should feel free to handle…and a list of things you should entrust to a professional!

DIY-Approved Air Conditioner Tasks

Basic cleaning and upkeep tasks can be safely handled by almost anyone. For example, you can clean the “fins” on your outdoor unit (the tiny vent slits on the outside of the unit) with a vacuum. Make sure to use a soft brush attachment when you vacuum the fins—they bend easily.

If any of the fins are bent, you can use a dinner knife to move them back into shape. You can also use the vacuum to clean the inside of the condenser.

Another vitally important job homeowners can handle. Changing the air filter in their indoor unit.

DIY-Denied Air Conditioner Tasks

There are a few reasons you don’t want to go beyond cleaning your AC unit. For one, any high-level maintenance on your air conditioner will require handling refrigerant—a toxic, potentially dangerous chemical if not treated with proper caution.

Even diagnosing refrigerant leaks requires special tools that aren’t all that cost-effective to buy unless you’re a professional HVAC technician. On that note, it’s worth mentioning that modern HVAC systems are complex systems—with so many components working together, identifying the causes behind symptoms would take an untrained homeowner, even a handy one, a few hours at best.

In short, there’s a reason that HVAC techs need years of training and certifications to work on air conditioners.

Give yourself some cash and schedule a spring tune-up for your air conditioner! Call our Durham HVAC technicians to schedule maintenance for your home. Dial 919-383-7000 or use our short online form today.

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