Your air conditioning system requires maintenance to run and to ensure it runs throughout its entire lifetime, but most people skip this task in their list of chores around the house. Instead, most homeowners will not realize that they have to maintain this appliance until it's too late and there's already a problem with their system. If your air conditioner is not being maintained, you can count on it breaking down long before its lifetime is up. If you aren't up to the task of maintaining your air conditioning system, you should hire a professional to do this work for you.

Read on for some AC system maintenance tasks you should regularly perform.

Clean The Condensing Unit

You should spray your exterior condensing unit at least a few times per year with the garden hose. This unit can build up with debris such as pollen, dander, dirt, dust, and grass clippings. It can accumulate with dog hair as well if you have a furry pooch that lives at your home. If you haven't been cleaning your unit, you may find a coating around the entire unit, which is going to cause your unit to become sluggish and have a hard time cooling your home. Clean this debris from the fins of the unit and spray it down at least a few times throughout the year to keep it clean.

Replace The Insulation

Replace the insulation on the refrigerant line on your exterior condensing unit when it gets damaged, or you notice that it is dry rotted in any way. This insulation helps to prevent it from freezing up and is essential for your air conditioning unit. Replace this insulation by cutting away the old insulation and adding a new piece. Cut it to fit and use black tape to seal it in place. This insulation may need to be replaced every couple of years, but it may need it more often if it gets damaged by outside elements.

Replace The Air Filter

The air filter in your system is going to need to be replaced just like you would any other time of the year. It may need it more often throughout the warmer weather months, as you may have more people in your home, you may have more dander in your home, or you may just have more dust in your home during this time of the year. Replace the air filter every other month but check it monthly.

If you aren't doing what you can to maintain your air conditioning system, it may break down much sooner than anticipated. Hire a professional HVAC company to do the above and other maintenance tasks for you.