The crocuses are awakening from their winter slumber and popping through the soil. The trees are showing red-tipped buds and birds are migrating back.

Soon, homeowners will start to throw open their windows to allow the fresh air to replace the stuffy, dusty air that takes hold during the cold, shuttered months of winter. Once the thermometer climbs past 80 degrees and the humidity lies thick in the air, it is tempting to turn on the air conditioning to seek comfort.

Before firing up the AC, consider contacting a licensed HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) contractor to inspect the air conditioning system. Jeff Jensen, an HVAC technician, has begun to have customers schedule a spring tune-up.

“We do a full inspection of the outdoor unit, check capacitors and contractor in the outdoor unit and do an amp draw and check refrigerant charge while the unit is running,” Jensen said.

Jensen said that their calendar is filling up quickly. By scheduling an appointment earlier rather than later, any issues can be discovered and remedied. He said that the tune-ups are best done on days that are 60 degrees or warmer and dry. He added that homeowners who fail to do so and find a problem with their AC, it will be difficult to schedule an appointment.

There are things that homeowners can do to help with the process of a tech being able to access an AC unit. Jensen suggests that shrubbery be kept away from the unit and that homeowners can also change the air filter for optimum performance.

To get a tune-up scheduled, it is important to make the initial call. Waiting until it is hot or when there is an issue will be too late.

“It is best to call and let us know that you are requesting a tune-up and we will put you on our call list,” Jensen said. “As soon as we get a warm day, preferably above 60, we will start doing tune-ups. As the weather becomes warmer, we will be doing them on a daily basis.”