You already know how important a properly functioning HVAC system is to your family – especially on those sweltering hot days, and those freezing cold nights. Unfortunately, most of us take our heating and cooling systems for granted until it suddenly stops working.
There are, however, several things you can do to ensure your HVAC system is not only running smoothly when you need it but will be for a long time to come. Plus, HVAC maintenance is way more cost-effective than expensive, last-minute repairs or replacement.
Read on for a money-saving HVAC maintenance checklist.
One of the best ways to save money on your HVAC system is to schedule an annual inspection with the professionals. This not only increases efficiency and performance but could extend the life of your unit. While you should be conducting visual inspections of the unit on a regular basis, having a professional come out to inspect the more intricate parts such as airflow could save you from a more costly repair later.
During the inspection, most HVAC technicians will:
This often tops the list of most-overlooked-but-helpful tasks to prolong the life of your HVAC: filter replacement.
Regularly changing your air filters can go a long way toward ensuring your HVAC system is running at optimal levels. Regularly replacing the air filters can lower your air conditioner’s energy consumption by 5-15%. Dirty air filters can block airflow, reduce efficiency, and lead to greater damage to the system.
You replace the air filter in your HVAC system every month or two, especially during high-use months. But, if you operate in dustier conditions or have pets, you may need to change them out more often.
Did you know leaky ductwork can result in a 20% to 40% loss in energy? This is why you should be checking for leaks, separated joints, stuck dampers and blocked registers. The air ducts are the backbone of your HVAC system. Sealing any leaks could mean an extra half-ton of air conditioner capacity – for free!
If you can’t remember the last time you inspected the louvers on your air vents, it’s time to clean your air vents. Years of use can cause dirt, grime, pet hair, and dust to accumulate on the vent covers.
Not only will a thorough cleaning make them look better, it will help reduce the allergens in your home, and more importantly, it will allow your HVAC system to operate more efficiently.
Visually inspect your outdoor unit on a regular basis. It’s not a “set it and forget it” system. Remove any leaves, branches, or debris that may have settled around the unit. Ensuring there is at least two feet of space will help it run more efficiently.
Consider placing a cover over the unit to protect it from dust, mud, or other debris that may clog the unit. And, lastly, make sure the concrete slab the unit is sitting upon is still even. If it’s on an uneven surface, your unit could be running on overtime.
While it may be an investment upfront, transitioning to a programmable thermostat could save you money, help your heating and cooling system run more efficiently, and ensure lower energy bills.
Turning your thermostat back 7-10 degrees when you’re away can save you up to 10% on cooling and heating costs each year.
Nearly half of your utility bill goes toward cooling and heating your home each year, according to the Department of Energy.
Taking the time to maintain your HVAC system can prevent future problems and unwelcome additional costs.
.In the dead of winter or the heat of summer, it’s second nature for us to walk over to the thermostat and adjust the temperature to make our homes comfortable.
Because this routine is so habitual, you probably don’t think much about the system’s technical processes. Like the one that works to ensure humidity levels in your home are optimal, or the one that filters and cleans indoor air to keep you healthy.
This comprehensive system of heating, cooling, and ventilation is also known as HVAC.
If you’re a new homeowner or haven’t worked with an HVAC company, let’s discuss what HVAC is, how it works in your home, and where to go if your HVAC system needs repairs.
The acronym HVAC stands for:
Think of HVAC as multiple systems that:
HVAC systems consist of different layers and methods of output. Meaning, HVAC isn’t only about central air conditioning or central heating, though these are two of the most common systems.
Let’s explore each part of the system.
You have several system options for heating your home, including furnaces, heat pumps, boilers, and ductless systems. For each system, there are different methods of heat delivery:
Without the ventilation component of HVAC, homeowners might notice a fluctuation in inside temperatures, and risk too much (or too little) humidity in the home, and unhealthy air quality. The most common types of ventilation systems are:
Homeowners also have a few choices when it comes to cooling their homes. The most common is using central air conditioning in conjunction with central heating, but that’s not the only solution. There are also split or ductless, window and portable units.
All AC options operate in the same way, using energy to move heat from homes and buildings to the outside.
Most air conditioning systems use:
Refrigerant moves between a liquid and gas state, and as it changes, refrigerant can absorb and release the heat outside of your home.
Because there are so many working parts and methods of operation in HVAC systems, it’s wise to give them an annual tune-up by the experts.
Preventive care of your HVAC systems can extend the life equipment and reduce costly and untimely repairs. When your HVAC systems are operating well, you can save on energy bills and keep your home’s air quality safe.