It’s the time of year when a few A/C operating tips may come in handy. Temperatures in Wichita exceed 90 degrees more than 60 days every summer, with relative humidity above 50 percent. Count on it: If your central air conditioner’s going to fade or fail altogether, that’s when it will happen. With the complexity of today’s A/C systems, a comprehensive checkup from an HVAC professional is your best guarantee of a trouble-free summer.  However, there are still a few do-it-yourself A/C operating tips a homeowner can follow to increase the chances of staying cool through the hot spells.

Change the filter

Since many A/C performance issues are related to airflow, keeping the air moving through the system at an optimal rate is critical. A routine change of the filter located in the air handler is doable for any do-it-yourselfer and will increase A/C energy efficiency and cooling effectiveness, plus guard your air quality. Some maintenance schedules call for filter changes every other month. During heavy summer cooling loads, monthly is a better idea.

Outside maintenance
The outdoor components of your A/C unit often get neglected. Cut back any vegetation so there’s at least two feet of space for airflow around the outdoor condenser cabinet. Shut off electrical power to the outdoor unit and remove the protective grille. Brush out any leaves, grass clippings or other debris, and use a garden hose with a nozzle to rinse dust off the condenser coil. Replace the grille and restore power.

Indoor maintenance
Visually inspect the evaporator coil in the indoor air handler. Excessive dirt accumulation reduces airflow and retains moisture, potentially causing ice buildup and mold growth. A dirty evaporator coil is a job for an HVAC technician with specialized cleaning solutions.


Flush some water through the air handler drip pan to verify that the condensate drain line is open and functions properly. If the drain is blocked, call an HVAC technician to avoid water damage from overflow.

Comfort Systems serves all the interior air quality needs of Wichita area homeowners with a single call. Contact us for more A/C operating tips for a long, cool summer.