HVAC Maintenance: Some Basic Steps
There is more to your Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning system (HVAC) than switching it on and off. When you get an HVAC system fixed or when you move into a place with an HVAC system, the time you take to understand the system and what basic maintenance steps you can take, will lower your heating and cooling costs and prolong the life of your system.
Here are some tips of things you can do to keep your HVAC system up and running for a long time:
1. Schedule a monthly cleaning routine for your air filters. Your HVAC system will have one air filter located at the point where the air return vent connects to the forced air furnace. Remove the filter and inspect it. If it is visibly dirty, it should be replaced or cleaned. Bear in mind that filters that may not appear dirty on the surface, may be plugging with debris in areas you can't see, receding their effectiveness. Some filters may be type that can be cleaned, but most often these filters are disposable. A dirty filter can be replaced with a new clean one. A new filter will reduce the wear and tear of the system itself. Cleaning or replacing the air filter will allow uncontaminated air to circulate throughout your home, helping you breathe easier.
2. With heat pumps you can switch the air filter that is present in the air handler. Since there are many different kinds of air filters, ensure that you get the right one when you go to buy an air filter.
3. Get electro static air filters for your HVAC system. Though they are expensive, they can be washed and reused several times, saving you overall HVAC maintenance costs.
4. Keep the area around your HVAC system and its vents clean and clear.
5. If you find that your HVAC system is making an unusual noise or emitting a strange smell, switch it off and call a HVAC professional.
6. Routine inspection by you and every 6 months inspection by an expert will help you keep your HVAC system safe and running. This service will provide the maintenance services you may not be able to provoke, and the HVAC expert will help you understand your system works, provide tips, and help identify any potential failures that could lead to a breakdown.
7. If your HVAC system is working fine, consider giving it a break for a few months when the outside temperature is just right for you to be comfortable indoors.
9. During the winter months, open your blinds and let the sunlight in through your windows, warming your house during the day. Close blinds or drapes in the evening to reduce the heat leaving through the windows. When you are warm enough during the day, even in winter, you can reduce the thermostat to reduce your heating costs. In summer you use blinds to reduce the excess heat entering your home from the windows. There are many ways to provide insulation for your windows, you can use blinds, drapes, or window tinting, etc. to reduce the workload of your HVAC system.
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