Your Homeowner’s Guide to HVAC Preventative Maintenance

HVAC preventative maintenance

As a homeowner, it’s wise to try to do everything you can to avoid any major repairs or replacements for things in your home. That list definitely includes your HVAC system, which can cost thousands of dollars to get a new one installed.

The good news is these systems are designed to last for years and years as long as they’re well taken care of. And the even better news is that it doesn’t take a lot to do that. You won’t be spending all of your free time working on the HVAC system or anything like that.

We suggest following these HVAC preventative maintenance tips to keep your system functioning and you comfortable in every season for as long as possible!

Replace Air Filters Regularly

The first and possibly most important task in HVAC maintenance is to change out the air filter on a regular basis. Too often this aspect of the system is forgotten and goes way too long without being taken care of.

An HVAC filter plays a crucial role in the whole system’s ability to function properly. They keep out all of the dust, pollen, and excess particles flowing through the air vents. Without the filters, the whole system becomes clogged up and can’t push air through to cool or heat your home.

Clean air filters also allow you to have cleaner air in your home. If they become too full some of the debris will be pushed through and you’ll end up breathing that in throughout the day.

Every filter comes with a lifespan recommendation. We suggest giving yourself a reminder based on that date so you never miss it and always have a clean filter!

Remove Dust and Debris from Ducts and Vents

A good HVAC filter does the job of keeping the air free from junk you don’t want floating around but they can’t collect it all, unfortunately. That’s why it’s also important to regularly clean out your vents and ducts.

As the system gets used and you live in your home, there will always be some build-up in these areas. It’s a good idea to  use a vacuum on the areas you can access to clean them out. But we also suggest having a duct cleaning service by professionals every year to ensure they’re free from problems.

Clear Out Outdoor Appliances

When the vents in your home become clogged or extra dusty, it’s obvious as you see them every day. But the outdoor unit is often a forgotten piece of the puzzle that can suffer from neglect easily.

Since it’s outside, the unit will often collect fallen leaves, dirt, and even sticks sometimes. You’ll want to keep it as clean as possible to extend the HVAC lifespan. This is easily done by turning off the system and clearing out the unit for any visible obstruction and then blowing it out with a leaf blower as well.

We recommend doing this twice a year; once before you turn on the AC for the first time and once before turning on the heater. This will be an easy reminder and give you a fresh start at each season.

Pay Attention When It’s On

For most homeowners, an HVAC unit is both crucial to a comfortable life and also out of sight, out of mind at the same time. It’s something we depend on but works in the background without much thought. That’s why we suggest trying to pay a little more attention to the unit when it’s on.

As it’s running, listen for different sounds, bad smells, or areas that don’t seem to be getting good airflow. When you’re more aware of the system, you’ll be able to catch issues and make changes before problems occur.

Just taking notice of your HVAC system will spur you to take better care of it and perform the necessary maintenance.

Monitor Usage and Reduce

Another thing to pay attention to is how often the unit is running, the easiest way to do that is to monitor your monthly bill. This way you can get familiar with what’s normal for your system and be alerted to anything out of the ordinary.

This monitoring will also allow you to work on ways to reduce your usage to limit the strain on the system. Everyone likes breaks and your HVAC system is no different!

You can reduce the load on your system by preparing it and your home for a change in seasons, installing a smart thermostat system, and choosing a moderate average temperature. All of these will limit the amount of time the whole system has to run and improve energy efficiency, reducing your bill and breakdown of parts.

Create an Inspection Schedule

Even with the best intentions and diligent maintenance schedule, there are still things that can go wrong and issues that could come up with your HVAC system. This is why regular inspections of the system is a good idea as well.

Look for obvious signs of a problem like broken parts or lack of airflow as your system is running. It’s also helpful to feel around for drafts and low spots which can indicate some problems.

We also suggest having an HVAC professional come and inspect the system at least once a year to make sure it’s running as smooth as possible. They’re trained to identify and remedy problems that you may be missing in your checks. It’s always a good idea to get another set of eyes on such a crucial system!

HVAC Preventative Maintenance for Your System

There’s so much to do and handle when you’re a homeowner. Even these simple HVAC preventative maintenance tips can be overwhelming to some. Luckily, there are trained professionals who can come to your home and take care of your system so you don’t have to!

The best thing you can do for your system is have it checked by an expert periodically to find any minor problems before they turn into major ones. You may also be surprised how big of an impact a tune-up can make on its performance.

If you’re interested in getting your HVAC system looked at, contact us today!

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