Though your vehicle's A/C is not crucial for getting from point A to point B, it's still a critical component for driver and passenger comfort, especially on long trips or hot days. And, like everything else you own, your car's air conditioning system needs to be maintained and cleaned regularly.

Why? Over time, your air conditioner will fill with pollen, dust, hair, dirt, and other road debris. If left unattended, your air conditioner will run less efficiently, meaning your car will burn more fuel while creating less cold air. This also adds strain to your engine, causing crucial components to wear down more quickly.

When you bring your vehicle into Hirlinger Motors for routine maintenance, ask us to look into your air conditioner. We'll be happy to give it a look and tell you how it's running - and if it's time for a cleaning, we'll be happy to do that for you, too.

You can also watch for signs that your vehicle's air conditioner is due for a cleaning. The easiest way is to log cleanings in your owner's manual and pay attention to the mileage intervals between cleanings. Over time, you'll learn how often to bring your A/C in for cleaning. If you haven't been tracking cleanings, however, you can still pay close attention to the performance of your air conditioner. If you notice that it is taking a little longer for the air to cool or that it is not getting as cold as it used to, it is likely time for some general air conditioner maintenance.

Additional signs that it might be time to clean your air conditioner include a foul odor (like mildew) emanating from the A/C when you run it, odd rattling sounds from within the A/C, or unusual puddles of water on the floor beneath the dash.