When the cold winds are blowing and snow is piling up under the eaves, you may find yourself daydreaming about the bright sunshine of spring. While you are anticipating all the activities you can participate in when things warm up, don't forget to make a list of spring maintenance tasks to complete. On the top of the list should be inspecting your air conditioner. In addition to having your system professionally checked each year, you can do some routine maintenance yourself.

Condenser Fan

After a hard winter, your system needs to be checked for damage and thoroughly cleaned. Before starting up your unit, remove the winter covering from the air conditioner. Locate the condenser fan inside the large box which is on the outside of your home. You need to remove the grill and then vacuum the fan blades as well as remove the leaves and other junk that has accumulated in the bottom of the unit. Trim back all the bushes and other vegetation that may be blocking your air conditioner and affecting its efficiency.

Outdoor Unit Panels

You also need to make sure your outdoor unit panels are still intact and properly aligned. If they are missing or just not sealing properly, water can penetrate into the unit and damage the electrical wiring. If you find this problem, you need to call a technician as soon as possible; otherwise, you risk serious damage to your air conditioner. 

Window Units

If you have window units, you also need to check each one before the summertime. In addition to cleaning them and changing their filters, you should inspect the drainage hole that is found at the base of the unit under the vents. You can use a paper clip or wire to clean out any blockage that may be impeding your unit from properly draining and preventing your air conditioner from functioning as it should. 

While you are suffering through winter's cold weather, dreams of spring can give you hope. While you are happily fantasizing, you can add a practical element to the exercise and make a list of the spring tasks that await you. Don't forget to address the needs of your air conditioning unit. It always needs to be checked regularly by an HVAC technician, but you can manage some of the basic maintenance tasks on your own. Be sure to inspect, clean, and call for help if winter weather damaged your unit and you're in need of air conditioning repair.