HVAC Maintenance Tips
Many people are perplexed by HVAC systems — they tend to call the HVAC company even for things that might require very little effort to fix.
Let’s take a look at a list of HVAC Maintenance tips for homeowners to make sure that your unit remains functioning.
First, there are a few basic points regarding preventive maintenance:
•If your system heats and cools, then you can maintain it in the spring and fall.
•If your system only cools, then you can maintain it at least once every year and right before summer
•If your system only heats (such as furnaces), again, carry out maintenance at least once a year but right before winter
Keeping filters clean
Your HVAC system’s filter is one of the most important components that can affect the system’s performance. The first thing HVAC specialists are going to check when you complain about lack of adequate cooling or heating performance is the filter.
Filters also affect the quality of indoor air because they trap dust and dirt particles. You can refer to your manual about the cleaning intervals. But if your filter has lasted 90 days, it might be time to change it. If you have pets, that duration should be shorter.
Outdoor units and heat pumps
Another critical part of the HVAC ecosystem is the outdoor unit as well as the heat pump. You need to check them periodically.
Make sure that the area around the outdoor unit (with a 2-foot radius) is free from hindrances that can impair the functioning of the HVAC system. You also might have to remove sticks, leaves or twigs that may have lodged themselves in the unit.
Also, check if the unit is level; sometimes due to sinking on soft ground the unit might tilt to one side. This can impede the proper flow of refrigerant through the unit.
For ducted systems, the ductwork is what carries the cold or hot air to different parts of your home. You need to make sure that ductwork is free from dirt, grime, and leaks because these can adversely affect the performance of your unit and might even lead to bigger problems if left unchecked.
The easiest way you can do this is by closing off your air registers and returns to increase pressure within the ducts and then find the leaks using a smoke pencil. The smoke twirls around or is sucked toward the ductwork, indicating a leak from that area.
A lot of times, when an HVAC system isn’t working at 100% efficiency, it will sound different.
There will be odd noises coming out of your unit, which can indicate there’s something wrong with it.
This can also mean the problem is sometimes beyond your scope, so if the sound doesn’t go away even after you’ve tinkered with it, you might have to call experts.
Schedule annual maintenance
Something that can go a long way when you want a smooth-running HVAC system is to sign up for an annual maintenance contract with an HVAC company that can give you effective coverage.
While HVAC systems have indeed become more sophisticated as time has passed, we have listed the things that you can check to make sure that your system is in good shape.
This won’t take much of your time but can save you a bundle of cash in preventing unwarranted repairs, replacements and high energy bills.
While an annual maintenance program sounds expensive, with the right HVAC contractor, it can save you money in the long run.