Preventive maintenance and cleaning are key in ensuring that air conditioning units continue to operate optimally throughout the summer heat.

(ROSENBERG, Texas) – Nobody wants to experience the nightmare of an air conditioning unit failure right in the heat of summer. Pricey system replacements and ongoing supply chain issues could prolong the misery.

That is why Texas State Technical College HVAC Technology instructor Keith Klix urges all homeowners to utilize the services of professional HVAC technicians for regular preventive maintenance.

“I highly recommend that everyone obtain a service contract, or at least have someone come out and do a preventive maintenance check,” Klix said. “That should start happening in March, April or May — before the heat starts coming in.”

But if homeowners do not have a service contract with a reputable HVAC company, which typically includes preventive maintenance appointments and cleanings during the spring and fall, they can still act to keep their air conditioning running optimally this season.

“Even this late, a technician can come out for a visual check and go from there,” Klix said.

Prevention is the key word that homeowners should remember when it comes to ensuring that their systems will keep them cool — even on the hottest days.

A preventive maintenance appointment typically includes lubricating any motors that require it, and checking the refrigerant charge, capacitors and contactors. Expert technicians know what to look for to help avoid failures, and maintaining a consistent relationship with your technician means proactive tracking of the health of your home’s air conditioning system.

Cleaning the outdoor unit is also key to avoiding costly clogs — especially with dust and debris in the air from construction projects throughout Fort Bend County, Klix said.

Klix also recommended avoiding the lowest price on cleaning or preventive maintenance. A service contract for $150 to $300 is typical — and fair, he said.

“That’s not a bad investment,” he said — especially if it helps your home stay comfortable.

TSTC’s campus in Fort Bend County offers an Associate of Applied Science degree and several certificates of completion in HVAC Technology training. This program is part of TSTCYou, which meets students where they are through a flexible, performance-based education that works with busy schedules.

In Texas, heating, air conditioning and refrigeration mechanics and installers can earn an average annual salary of $47,980, according to onetonline.org, which forecasts the number of these positions to grow by 16% through 2028.

Registration for the fall semester at TSTC is underway. For more information, visit tstc.edu.

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