Blog | Forcedaire HVAC | Air Conditioning | Heating and Cooling Systems


#1 – Proper Airflow and Clean Air

Your furnace pulls air from your home, through a filter, heats it and returns it through the vents. The filter removes dust, hair, and other allergens. For asthma sufferers, eliminating that dust can significantly reduce attacks. During a Fall Tune-Up of your furnace, your HVAC technician will make sure the blower is working properly, and that debris has not made its way into the unit.

#2 – Tune-Up to Keep Your Family Safe

Carbon monoxide is a silent killer. A malfunctioning furnace or heat pump is one of the number causes of carbon monoxide poisoning. Over time, older furnaces develop small cracks in the combustion chamber. These cracks let deadly gas leak out into your home. By the time you realize the problem, it is usually too late. During your Fall maintenance visit, your technician will inspect your furnace for cracks and let you know if you have leaks that need repair.

#3 – Extend the Life of Your Furnace

It’s an old cliche but still one that’s true. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Annual cleaning and preventative maintenance extend the life of your heater. Your furnace is an investment, and you want to get as many miles out of it as possible. Take care of it like you would your car. Make sure you get a yearly tune-up and avoid costly repair bills.

#4 – Save Money on Heating Bills

Dirt that collects inside your heating unit can reduce its efficiency as much as 40%. This accumulation can cause a lower output of air, which causes your furnace to run longer. Lower efficiency translates into higher heating bills.

#5 – Maintenance Costs Less Than Repair

Furnace replacement can run you thousands of dollars. Your Fall maintenance visits only cost a fraction of that amount. Maintenance fees are also much less than emergency repairs. You want to avoid a late-night call during sub-zero weather if at all possible.

Did you know that keeping current on your annual maintenance keeps you in compliance with manufactures warranty standards?

What Does a Tune-Up of Your Furnace Include?

A tune-up includes a thorough cleaning and a full inspection of your heater to identify any potential issues. We make sure that the unit is operating at its optimal efficiency and if there are any areas of concern, we’ll let you know.


Expert advice on ways you can clean and prepare your central air conditioner before the cooling season arrives. Includes how-to information on cleaning the condenser coils, checking the coolant lines, and testing the unit.

On the first really hot day of summer, the last thing you want is to flip the switch on your central air conditioner only to find that it doesn’t work.

When an air conditioner unit sits idle for months, collecting leaves and debris, a bit of maintenance is often needed to get it running properly.

If you don’t do this maintenance before summer arrives, you may end up waiting several hot days for a busy service pro—and paying top-of-the- season prices, to boot.

Now is the time to get your A/C system working well. You can call an A/C pro to do this–but that may cost you $250 or more.

Here you will learn how to replace the filters, clean the condenser coils, and otherwise get your AC unit into tiptop shape so that it’s ready to operate and cool your home efficiently.

Central Air Conditioning Basics

A central air-conditioning system employs two main components: a condenser unit, which is typically located outdoors, and an evaporator unit mounted on the air handler or furnace.

Together these extract heat from room air through refrigeration technology. The air handler or furnace blower blows the resulting chilled and dehumidified air through ductwork to the home’s rooms.

Repairs to a central air conditioner’s sealed refrigeration system are not a do- it-yourself job. They should be handled by a HVAC service professional.

You can, however, do certain cleaning and maintenance tasks yourself to ensure efficient operation and keep the need for professional service people to a minimum. Some of those tasks are detailed below.

Safety First—Shut Off Power

Before working on a central air conditioner, always turn off the power to the condenser at the service panel, as shown at right. The condenser also typically has a 240-volt weatherproof disconnect box located near the unit; this contains a lever, fuses, or a circuit breaker to shut off the condenser. Turn this off, too. Turn off the circuit breaker before working on the AC system.

How to Clean or Replace the AC Filters

This is the easiest and often most important step. Most systems have a replaceable or reusable filter in the furnace or air-handler cabinet (usually located inside or very near the air-inlet side). Some systems also employ air filters in the return-air registers inside the house. Clean or replace all return- air, furnace or air-handler filters twice a year or whenever they begin to look clogged with dust. If you don’t, air flow will be restricted, reducing efficiency, and you will recirculate dust into your home.

Change all filters that serve the air conditioner at least twice a year.

How to Clean the Condenser Coils

A central air conditioner’s condenser unit, typically located outdoors, is a large metal box with sides that look like grilles. Behind the grilles, you can see fan blades. Ideally, it is protected through the winter by a condenser cover or tarp to prevent accumulation of debris inside it.

Central AC unit’s outdoor compressor unit contains a fan that should be clear of debris.

Otherwise, it is likely to contain leaves, dirt and debris—and you will need to clean it.

Dirt caked onto the coils of an AC condenser unit reduces efficiency.

Anything that obstructs the flow of air will cut down the condenser’s efficiency, so these coils should be cleaned at the beginning of every cooling season if they are clogged.

To clean the coils, you’ll need to remove the side and top panels or protective grilles from the condenser unit, using a screwdriver or a nut driver, depending upon the type of fasteners that have been used. Be sure the power to the unit is turned off before you open up the condenser.

Just unscrew the side panels and pull them away from the unit, and then lift off the top, which may be heavy due to the weight of the fan attached to it. Don’t tug any of the wires connected to the fan.

Using a refrigerator coil or a soft brush on a vacuum, gently clean the coils from the outside of the unit. Be careful not to bend the delicate fins or damage the coils. If you do bend the fins, you can straighten them with a “fin comb” made for this purpose. After cleaning from the outside, vacuum the coils from the inside.

To release stubborn debris, spray on a commercial AC coil cleaner from the inside, being careful not to spray the fan or electrical components. Use a hose with a spray nozzle to carefully clean the coils inside the condenser.

Sometimes it’s necessary to use a hose with a trigger-style nozzle to blast dirt and debris out of the coils from inside the unit with a strong but focused stream but be very careful if you do this. Take care not to bend the fins, flood the area, or spray water on electrical components or the fan motor—cover those parts with a plastic garbage bag. Also be aware that doing this can cause mud to block some of the areas between the fins, so you will need to be thorough.

Clean and Clear Debris from Condenser

Scoop leaves and debris out of the base of the condenser and, if it has a drain, make sure the drain is clear.

Use the vacuum and a rag to clean the blower’s fan blades. Then tighten any loose mounting bolts and, if the fan motor has oil ports, put a few drops of lightweight oil or spray WD-40 into the ports for lubrication. Mop up any excess water inside the unit, and then reassemble the condenser.

Cut and remove any weeds or vines that may obstruct airflow through the condenser unit.

Check the Coolant Lines

The refrigerant tubes or pipes that run from the evaporator on the air handler to the condenser outside are typically covered with foam coolant line insulation to prevent them from losing energy. Replace frayed or missing insulation on coolant lines.

If you see areas where the insulation is frayed or missing, replace it. To do this, install foam insulation sleeves or wrap the lines in a spiral fashion with foam insulation tape.

Test the AC Unit

Allow the unit to dry thoroughly and then turn the power to the condenser back on by doing the following: First, turn the thermostat in your home to OFF. Then turn on the power at both the disconnect box and at the main panel.

Last, switch the thermostat to COOL.


Filter Change

WHY CHANGING YOUR FURNACE FILTER IS IMPORTANT A filter might seem like an insignificant part of a furnace or A/C system, yet good airflow is vital. If your filter is clean, your system works efficiently. If it’s clogged and dirty, your system works harder than it should. That means higher bills and lower air quality. […]

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Tips to Keep Cool This Summer

Having trouble keeping cool in the summer heat? Read these six tips to learn how to cool down when the temperature goes up. Everyone loves summertime, but when the heat gets too severe, it’s important to listen to your body and find relief. But keeping cool is sometimes easier said than done. In this blog, […]

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The conventional furnace is usually designed in a way that it can remain functional for many years. At times, different parts of the furnace can fail and cause the furnace to not work properly. Sometimes the entire furnace can fail to function. This is very inconvenient especially during the winter season in Winnipeg when the […]

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Importance of Indoor Air Quality

Respiratory ailments, often attributed to poor indoor air quality, represent the third largest cause of death in the U.S., ranking only behind heart disease and cancer, according to the American Medical Association. The Environmental Protection Agency has said that indoor air is often 7-10 times poorer than outdoor air quality. Airborne Particles Airborne particles are […]

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Furnace Repair & Tune Up

Don’t get caught in the middle of winters with a broken furnace. Routine maintenance can keep your system working better for longer. Get a tune-up or repair in Weber, Davis & Salt Lake Counties on any brand of furnace with the experts at Forced Aire HVAC. Signs Your Furnace Needs Repairs Your furnace may still […]

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Is an AC Tune Up Really Necessary?

As we move into the warmer months you may be asking yourself, “Is an AC tune up really necessary?” It’s a common question that we frequently hear, and the short answer is “yes”, and here’s why. Your AC unit is a major investment. Annual AC tune ups can add years to your unit’s life. Your […]

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Things to Do Before You Turn on Your Furnace This Fall

As the days get shorter and the nights get cooler, you may be starting to think about turning on your furnace for the first time this fall. While the weather’s still warm, prepare for a safe and comfortable autumn and winter by following these steps before you turn on your furnace. Schedule Preventive Maintenance For […]

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What is Air Duct Cleaning?

Most people are now aware that indoor air pollution is an issue of growing concern and increased visibility. Many companies are marketing products and services intended to improve the quality of your indoor air. You have probably seen an advertisement, received a coupon in the mail, or been approached directly by a company offering to […]

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