How To Prepare Your Air Conditioner Before You Go On Vacation

When you head out on vacation, you don't want to leave your air conditioner running full blast. Not only will this cost a lot, but a constantly running air conditioner while you're not home to deal with malfunctions and problems is a recipe for disaster. Here are a few things that you should do before you leave on vacation to ensure that your air conditioner is in good working condition when you return.

Change the Temperature

One of the most important things that you should do before you head out is adjust the temperature on your air conditioning unit's thermostat. Leaving the temperature at the same level as you would if you were at home would mean that you would have to pay the same energy bills while you're away. In order to save some money, you can raise your air conditioner's temperature several degrees: this allows air to still circulate through the ducts, preventing dust from building up and blocking the ductwork, but doesn't come with the same energy costs.

Shut the Blinds

In a similar vein to the above point, there are a few things that you should do to keep the heat out of your house. This will keep your air conditioner from working too hard while you're away, giving you additional energy savings. Close the blinds, unplug unnecessary appliances which can create heat, make sure that all the lights are off, and lock all of the windows and doors when you leave. This will help keep hot air out and your air conditioner running at a bare minimum.

Clean the Filter

Another important maintenance task that you should perform on your home's air conditioner before you leave is to have the air filter either cleaned or replaced (depending on if you have a reusable or a disposable air filter — check your owner's manual to determine this). This means that your air conditioner will remove dust and other impurities from your home's air supply, and that you won't come home to a layer of dust all over your home.

Clean the Condenser

Besides indoor maintenance, you should take care to remove any debris, like branches and leaves, from your air conditioner's outdoor condenser unit. You should also trim back the bushes and trees around the condenser to make it less likely that more debris will fall into the condenser in the event of severe weather or a storm. Cleaning out this debris ensures that your air conditioner has a proper air intake and is able to operate as efficiently as possible while you are away.