There are times of the year when we become increasingly appreciative of our air conditioning systems. On the flip side, we also become increasingly aware of when they’re not working as well as we’d expect. However, before that happens, you may be able to do some basic proactive maintenance that can make costly repairs less likely to be needed.

The very first thing you’ll want to do before tackling an air conditioner maintenance project is to disconnect it from power. If you happen to have a lockout/tagout setup, this would be preferred, but at the very least, it would be a good idea to inform everyone in the house that you’re going to be working on the air conditioner. Once that’s done, remove any exterior casing. Now that you can see what’s inside, remove any debris, clean or replace filters, and make sure nothing looks strange. From here, you might lubricate the motor, or clean the condenser and evaporator coil. A routine that includes these simple tasks can do a lot to extend the life of your air conditioner.

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