Hvac Maintenance 101 – Getting the Most Out of Your System
Your heating and cooling systems can use a lot of energy. Improving the overall efficiency of your equipment can keep your home comfortable while lowering your electricity bills. A furnace that is clogged with dust around its blowers will not be able to produce as much heat as an appliance that is clean and running at peak efficiency.
Maintenance is key to the proper operation of an air conditioner or furnace. Some of these tasks are easy to do on your own, while others may require the attention of a professional.
Remember to check the air filters of your system and replace them if needed about once a month. This should continue through the year as you switch between using the furnace and the air conditioner. Dust and debris can clog the filter, constricting air flow, which puts more wear and tear on your system.
It might be a good idea to check your HVAC filters more than once a month to see if the filter needs replacement if you live in a dry and dusty area and if you do need a replacement or any other repairs, it’s good to look into companies like Fahrenheit HVAC who specialize in heating and air conditioning services.
Check your manuals to find the manufacturer’s recommendations for sizes and types of filters. You also should occasionally clean out around the outdoor air conditioner unit to make sure it is free of debris and encroaching plant growth. A little bit of weeding in the summer can prolong the life of your air conditioner!
Twice a year, you should remove the air conditioner or furnace access panel and look for a buildup of debris around the motor housing and belts. When insects and rodents find their way into your heating and cooling appliances, they leave a mess behind, which should concern you as an accumulation of debris can cause increased wear on internal components.
Listen for squeaks and squeals. These noises can indicate issues with bearings, worn belts or loose bolts. A thorough check for leaks and damage in the area surrounding the appliance is also required.
If possible, part of your landscaping in your yard should provide shading for your outdoor air conditioner during the summer months. This can reduce the load on your compressor because the intake air will be up to 10 degrees cooler.
You need to clean the condenser coils of the air conditioner and inspect the drain lines for clogs or leaks at least once a year. When the condenser coils are covered in a thick layer of dust, they have a reduced capacity for cooling.
An annual professional inspection of your home’s heating and cooling system can catch parts that are close to the breaking point. This saves you hundreds of dollars over an emergency repair required when your system goes out in the middle of a hot day or a cold night.
Make sure you ask the professional to inspect your air ducts for leaks or mold growth that could pose a serious risk to your family’s health. Tell the professional you would like to have your thermostat calibrated properly as well to avoid unnecessary heating and cooling demands.
You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars on a simple inspection and maintenance visit. If you keep your heating and cooling appliances clean and free of debris, they will reward you with decades of reliable service.