Here in Southeast Michigan, the arrival of spring is always a welcome respite from the frigid winter months. In Facilities Management however, every season comes with its own checklists and challenges: items that must be addressed now before the next change of seasons is upon us. As we begin to engage in spring preparedness, ensuring that air conditioning systems are functioning properly is essential; AC inspection and maintenance is at the top of the list of basic summer preparation that needs to be performed for all commercial buildings.
While the thermometer has not yet hit the red zone, there are important actions we can take now that will help assure proper operation of this equipment when it is needed in the coming season:
- Inspect HVAC equipment for damage, paying extra attention to rooftop units that may have been damaged by ice and snow or vandalized during the winter
- Inspect/change air filters
- Check the evaporated drain pan and condensate piping for blockages
- Inspect (and clean, as necessary) all evaporator and condenser coils
- Inspect and lubricate all dampers and bearings
- Inspect fan shafts for wear and repair as needed
- Inspect and replace, as necessary, all fan belts
- Inspect all coils and piping for leaks
- Inspect fan blades and fan guards
- Inspect and tighten all wire terminals
- Where possible, inspect oil levels in unit compressors
Reminder: when performing the maintenance and inspections procedures above, safety is of the utmost importance—all lock out/tag out procedures need to be followed at all times.
Remember that if the power to the compressor was turned off, power must be turned on for at least 24 hours prior to placing it into operation to prevent possible damage to the unit.
The bottom line is that a little sweat now can save you a lot of sweat in August: performing the preventative maintenance procedures listed above will go a long way towards ensuring that your and your clients’ cooling systems are in peak working order, and that the equipment operates properly and efficiently during the coming summer months.