The first day that heat gets turned off and the air gets switched on really should be a national holiday—the true last day of cold weather. But before you run to the thermostat to celebrate the arrival of summer, there are few things you need to do beforehand to ensure that your A/C unit works all summer long.

Check The Condenser. Walk outside and look at your air conditioning system’s outside unit, called the condenser. Did you put a cover on it for the winter? If so, take it off. Next, move any nearby objects at least 18 inches away. Finally, remove debris by using a hose with a nozzle to spray the coils at a 45-degree angle.

Change The Filter. Walk back inside and change the filter. You should install a new filter before you first turn on your cooling system, and filters should be changed monthly during the summer. Regularly changing the filters is one of the best things you can do for your A/C. It can save you a lot of money and hassle down the road.

Close The Basement Vents. It’s not crucial, but it’s a good idea to close the vents in the basement and concentrate the cool air on the warmer upper levels of your home.

Turn It On. This is it, the moment we’ve been waiting for! Gather the kids around the thermostat, regale them with fond childhood memories about grandpa turning on the A/C for the first time every year, and as soon as the anticipation reaches a fever pitch, turn that sucker on!

Check For Abnormal Noises. As every parent knows, there’s just as much work after Santa comes as before. Fortunately, you’re not staring down drifts of wrapping paper and a mountain of dishes today. All you have to do is walk outside and make sure the fan is spinning, and then walk back in and make sure everything sounds normal. If it doesn’t, turn the system off and call a professional.

An annual tune-up and cleaning can go a long way in keeping your system running worry-free all summer, and it can save you in future repair costs as well. Contact Atlas Butler to schedule your tune-up today.