CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WOWK) — Temperatures are heating up and that means people are kicking on their air conditioning. There are some things homeowners can do to keep their air conditioner running at its best.

Jay Marino is the owner of Al Marino, INC., and he says the main thing to do is check your filter.

“Hold your filter up to a light, and if you can’t see good clear light coming through that filter, it needs either washed, if it is a permanent filter or it needs replaced,” Marino said.

The next step is as easy as changing a battery.

“One thing we do on the phone if someone calls in and says ‘I have no air conditioning,” — when’s the last time you checked the batteries in your thermostat? That’s a biggie,” he explained.

Marino said homeowners also have to think about the space around the unit and maintain the area to make sure nothing is interfering with the job it is trying to do.

“They go out and cut the grass around the outdoor unit, and all of those cuttings are jammed up against that air conditioning unit,” he said. “So make sure it’s clean, it’s not full of grass, that your pet hasn’t been out there doing its business on your very expensive air conditioning unit.”

Finally, Marino said it is a good idea to get a check-up twice a year with an expert to make sure any problems are caught before they get more expensive than they need to be.

“It is like taking your car in for a regular maintenance, same thing with your air conditioning system,” Marino said. “Today air conditioning systems are very expensive if they have to be replaced.”

He says another benefit to making sure your unit is maintained is that it could help save on the household utility bills.