I'm a typically handy guy who knows his limits. I recently moved into a new house so am unfamiliar with the history of the equipment.

Before I switch the thermostat to A/C for the first time this year, I'd like to do visual inspection/maintenance on my A/C unit. What is a list of things an HVAC company would check/do on a system with no apparent issues?

I would not check refrigerant levels myself because that's illegal here, but I would still like stuff like that included in an answer.

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    Clean your evaporator coil. Clean your condenser coil. Replace any damaged tube insulation on the suction line. Get some AC pan tablets from your favorite home improvement store and follow package instructions.
    – bigbull15
    Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 23:17
  • @user288719 Thanks! I knew the first three, but those pan tablets look like a good idea. Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 23:20
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    When cleaning the evaporator from the outside make sure you clean at a downward angle.
    – Cjwntaw
    Commented Apr 9, 2016 at 16:14

1 Answer 1


The pan tablets are to prevent gunkies from growing. You do not want to be checking freon levels unless your system has a site glass. Then watching for bubbles in the glass, some fully charged systems will have bubbles. The reason you don't want to check pressures that requires opening the system and a small amount of freon is lost. HVAC techs use special sealing compounds on the threads and instruments to verify there are no leaks at the end of a service (I and the guys I have worked with do anyway). There are special gauges used for testing the high and low side pressure, the type of freon and temperature are all used to determine if the system is properly charged. Really the only thing you can or should do is; Clean the outside condenser coil. Clean the inside evaporator coil. Verify the insulation is in good shape. Possibly add a few drops of oil to the fan motors. Install fresh air filters and keep the condensing coil drip pan clean.

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