Did you know that the inventor of AC, Willis Carrier, had the idea when he saw his breath change states of matter on a foggy morning? Since then, his discovery has become an essential part of regulating the comfort of our homes. But with energy prices rising, do you know how to keep a system running efficiently?
Luckily, it takes less time than people think. Read on as we discuss 7 essential HVAC maintenance tips.
1. Schedule Professional HVAC Maintenance
It may seem like an added expense, but regular tuning and servicing by an HVAC professional will save money over time. Parts won’t break down as much, meaning you hold off repairs and prolong the life of your system. As an expert will also spot problems before they occur, you won’t have to fork out for emergency callouts when your cooling gives in.
Another advantage is that when your system is running at peak efficiency, you use less energy. This will have a noticeable impact on your household’s bills.
You can do maintenance on your own. However, you won’t have the tools and expertise to get inside the system, such as into the ductwork and units. This is why you should consider expert help.
2. Replace Your Air Filters
The filters are a section where the air gets drawn into the system. They filter out pollutants such as dirt, debris, and pet dander. This means it is very easy for them to get clogged.
When they do, then it is bad news. Your HVAC has to work overtime to draw in more air due to the blocked filters. This results in increased energy use and strain on the other mechanical parts.
Any air that does get in is also usually contaminated, having moved through filthy filters. This will decrease the air quality, especially bad for those with allergies that live in the home.
Luckily, air filters are one part of HVAC system maintenance that you can do yourself. All you need to do is purchase the right size filters, slip the old ones out and replace them with the new ones.
3. Set the Thermostat
One of the easiest and most effective HVAC maintenance tips is to regularly set the thermostat. This is the control unit for the whole system that tells it what to do. Most problems can be traced back to incorrect controls.
Make sure you have checked the handbook on how it works. You can then set it according to the times of day when you need it.
One way to check if it has the right temperature is to set it to your desired climate. Leave it on for a while, then hold a glass and mercury thermometer next to it. If your digital thermostat reads the wrong temperature, it needs recalibrating.
To improve control and energy efficiency, you may wish to consider installing a SMART thermostat. As you can control it from your device, you can switch it on and off as and when needed, even when not at home. This prevents wastage.
4. Check the Condenser
Your condenser is in the unit outside the home. This is the section where heat gets released. If it is dirty, or the unit gets blocked, then it can’t do this job properly.
The unit is designed to be robust, but it is not indestructible. If you have had adverse weather, always check the unit has not been hit by anything. Make sure you clean away any leaves and branches that may have gotten stuck in the unit.
It also needs to be able to disperse the heat. To do so, you should have 2 feet of space around the unit. This may involve trimming back branches or clearing away furniture.
5. Check Your Insulation
One important piece of HVAC maintenance advice is to check the insulation in your home. It not only keeps cool air in but warm air out. Thus you use less power to moderate the climate in your home.
The attic is the most important place to begin. You may need to add or upgrade the insulation there. Make sure you also have adequate ventilation to prevent mold and mildew growth.
Other places you can do this are in the wall cavities and even in basements. Around windows and doors are another place where lots of heat are often lost.
6. Clean Your Ducts
Not all systems will have ductwork. For those that do, this network is responsible for pushing cool and hot air through the home. If it gets dirty, then the air quality suffers.
If the ductwork has leaked it will also result in a loss of efficiency. These are also areas where lots of pollutants can accumulate.
This can be rectified by installing proper insulation. Professionals such as Capitol Duct Cleaning will be more than willing to assist.
7. Clean Your Drain Line
Your AC does not just cool but also dehumidifies by taking moisture from the air. It gets removed through a drain line. If it becomes clogged, this can cause numerous problems.
You may find that it leaks into the home. In some cases, the AC will shut down to prevent damage. Make sure you get the drain line cleaned and flushed as part of an inspection.
If you are unsure of how to conduct HVAC maintenance, then don’t be afraid to get help. There will be many specialists in your local area. Check reviews of them online and get a few quotes.
This article is one of many to keep you comfortable this season. From finances to decorating, we can help manage your home with our expert articles and advice.