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Ways to Extend the Life of Your AC Unit


Article by Jason Fraser

Photography by Laurie Fraser

A common question our technicians at A&A Air get from Lantana homeowners is, “How many more years do you think we can get out of our AC unit?” While we’d love to say your unit will last forever — especially if you choose us for regular preventative maintenance — the reality is that all good AC units go to heaven someday. So the goal is really to do the little things now to extend their functional lifespan for as long as possible.


The good news is that extending the life of your AC unit doesn’t have to be complicated. There are plenty of simple things you and your air conditioning contractor can do right now through routine maintenance to keep everything running smoothly.


It’s getting hot out there, so avoid these common AC issues this summer:


•    No cool air flowing

•    AC won’t turn on or stop running

•    Refrigerant leaks

•    Loud hissing, squealing, and vibration sounds

•    Short cycling

•    Ice buildup

•    Poor indoor air quality


8 Simple Ways to Extend the Life of Your AC Unit


1. Keep the outdoor unit clean and clear — Grass clippings, dirt, pet urine, leaves, landscaping, weeds, etc., can easily collect on fan blades and compromise other components. This prevents airflow, limits component lifespans, and keeps the system from working efficiently. Hosing down your unit every so often, especially after you’ve done yard work, and maintaining at least two feet of clear space around the unit is a great way to avoid unnecessary obstructions that can harm your unit.


2. Change your air filters — Air filters remove dust, dirt, pollen, and other particles to keep your home’s air clean and safe. They also ensure critical airflow cycles to and from your air conditioner to keep your home comfortable. Clogged air filters force the unit to work harder. Most air filter manufacturers like General Electric, Filtrete, HEPA, and Honeywell and HVAC companies recommend changing your air filter every three months. But a lot of that depends on the size and quality of your air filter.


3. Clean air vents and ducts — Beyond air filters, air vents and air ducts throughout your home can easily become clogged with dust particles, etc., and force your AC unit to work harder instead of smarter … thus reducing its lifespan.


4. Upgrade your thermostat — Many homeowners are so fixated on what’s working or not working on their outdoor AC unit that they don’t stop to think that their thermostat may be on the fritz or simply outdated. Updating your older thermostat ensures your system won’t keep running when it doesn’t need to. It also prevents uneven cooling, short cycling, and other issues, thus reducing wear and tear and extending the system’s lifespan.


5. Give your AC unit a rest — Depending on what temperature you have your thermostat set at, your AC unit could be running during times when it doesn’t necessarily need to. For example, bump up the thermostat set point a few degrees when you plan on being out of the house for extended periods. You could also open a few windows at night or run your bedroom and living room fans at a higher speed when the outside temps drop. These techniques will undoubtedly prolong your system’s lifespan.


6. Take the load off — Little things like closing the blinds or drapes on a sunny day, unplugging unused electronics, replacing worn-out weather stripping, and even using the dryer at night instead of during the day can go a long way toward taking the load off your AC unit. All of these factors keep your indoor temperatures cooler and reduce electricity usage.


8. Preventative maintenance — The secret to ensuring your home’s HVAC system runs as efficiently as possible and keeps your family comfortable year-round comes down to one major to-do item: preventative maintenance. Sure, everything may be working great right now, but more often than not, the families who stay cool in the summer and warm in the winter are the ones who had their systems professionally inspected, serviced, and cleaned before those peak times of the year become too unruly.


The best time to schedule preventative maintenance for your HVAC system is once before winter (in the fall) and again right before the hottest months of the year (spring). This is your chance to address small problems now and extend the lifespan of your AC unit easily before they become expensive repairs later.


The Indoor Air Quality Association lists these essential reasons why preventative maintenance is so important:


1.   Prevent costly breakdowns

2.   Reduce energy bills

3.   Extend the life of your system

4.   Stay protected under warranty

5.   Improve your indoor air quality

6.   Improve your comfort

7.   Keep your home safer

8.   Help the environment

9.   Give yourself greater peace of mind


Click here to see what’s included in A&A Air’s Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter preventative maintenance checklists.


Call A&A Air in Lantana, TX, Today to Extend the Life of Your AC Unit.


It can be frustrating not knowing how long your AC unit will last. But preventative maintenance can at least extend its lifespan as long as possible. At A&A Air, we take your family’s comfort seriously. We know our job inside and out and respond promptly.


All you need to do is give us a call today!


We proudly serve Lantana, TX, and surrounding areas. You can email us at or call 972-951-1320.