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Landlords And Tenants- The 16x20x1 Pleated Elephant In The Room

95% of required maintenance for Air Conditioners and Furnaces is changing the air filter on a regular basis and spraying off the A/C condensing coil with water once a year. However with rental properties this is disproportionately neglected compared to owner occupied properties. With rental properties the owner thinks the tenant is supposed to change the air filter and vice versa. And guess what, no one ends up changing the air filter. Or better yet the tenant removes the air filter all together because why not and probably crack is involved somehow. Dirty air filters will restrict the air flow and cause issues but worse than that is leaving it out altogether which I see a lot at rental properties. What happens is

the dirt then accumulates in the evaporator coil and eventually the coil gets blocked. When the air flow is restricted the furnace will overheat and the A/C will freeze up. Eventually this can ruin the HVAC equipment. Most evaporator coils are not meant to be cleaned. If there is a filter in place the coil will typically never get dirty enough to need a professional cleaning. This can become a real problem with no good practical solution. So the bottom line is if you are a Landlord make sure the filter is getting changed.

Landlords what I recommend is first make sure your tenant knows how to change the filter. During your initial walk through let them know it's their responsibility and show them how it's done. Then buy a 6 pack of filters online and leave it at the property. Then set up a reminder on your calendar to have them change the filter every other month and send you a picture showing its been done. Also the condensing coil needs to be sprayed off with water. If it’s on the ground, spray off the coil once a year minimum. This will help save energy so it's an incentive for the tenant to do it. Overall I see some really good tenants and some tenants that are a real mess. Before getting into this business being a landlord looked appealing, now not so much.

For do it yourself A/C maintenance tips check out this link

If you have any questions or want to set up service please call (916) 671-5542


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