Did you know that HVAC replacement can cost anywhere between $4,800 to over $12,000?
And in the middle of winter, your HVAC system will be put to the test trying to heat your home and keep your family warm. So what can you do to prevent having an expensive replacement?
The answer is HVAC maintenance.
You’ll want to follow these simple steps to ensure that your heating system is working properly all winter long! Here are seven HVAC maintenance tips to keep your system running smoothly this winter season.
1. Clean Or Replace Your Air Filters Regularly
Air filters help keep your HVAC system running smoothly. They also help improve the quality of the air in your home. Be sure to clean or replace your air filters regularly, especially during the winter months when the air is dryer and dustier.
You will need to replace most air filters every three to six months.
Pro-tip: If you have pets, you’ll probably need to replace your air filters more often. So, plan to check and change them every two to three months.
How To Replace Your Air Filter
Turn off your air conditioner and furnace. Remove the old filter. Set a new filter in place (making sure that it’s oriented correctly). Turn your system back on and check for any air leaks or cracks.
2. Inspect Your Thermostat
In addition to cleaning or replacing your air filters, inspect your thermostat regularly.
Clean the face of the unit with a dry cloth and check that it’s showing accurate readings. If there is any sign of damage, contact a professional for service. Also, remember to turn off your central heating while away from home or sleeping.
Pro-tip: Program your thermostat to turn on and off at certain times of the day. This can help you save energy and money.
3. Have Your Heating System Serviced At Least Once A Year
Perform an annual inspection of your heating system by having heating and AC repair contractors service it before the cold weather sets in.
By doing HVAC service, you will detect any problems that could later become serious and costly to repair or replace. You should also have your heating system serviced if it starts acting up or showing signs of decreased performance.
For example, if your furnace isn’t working or if the flame is faulty, you should schedule an inspection right away. Leaving it unrepaired can increase your risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Pro-tip: Schedule your heating system service around the beginning of fall, before you start using it heavily.
4. Have Your Heating Ducts Cleaned And Sanitized At Least Once A Year
Dust, allergens, and other particles inevitably build up inside your heating system’s ductwork and spread throughout the air that you breathe inside your home.
If you haven’t had your ducts cleaned and sanitized in a while, now is the time to do it. This will help improve the quality of the air in your home and also increase the efficiency of your heating system.
How To Sanitize Your Ducts
Shut off your furnace and air conditioner. Locate the main shut-off valve for your heating system. Turn the valve to “off.” Disconnect the duct hose from the furnace. Connect the sanitizing unit to the hose. Turn on the sanitizing unit and let it run for 30 minutes. Reconnect the duct hose to the furnace. Turn on the furnace and air conditioner.
Pro-tip: You may want to consider hiring a professional duct cleaning service to do the job for you.
5. Check The Seals Around Your Doors And Windows
Leaky doors and windows can allow cold air to seep into your house.
Be sure to check the seals around these openings for any gaps or cracks. If necessary, hire a professional window installer to make the necessary repairs.
How To Spot Problems With Your Doors And Windows
Look for gaps or cracks around the edges of your door. Check that your window is flush against its frame. Look for signs of water damage, such as discoloration on the walls around your doors and windows.
Pro-tip: If you have a wood stove or fireplace in your home, be sure to have the chimney inspected and cleaned regularly.
6. Ensure That All Heating Appliances Are Firmly Supported And Safe To Use
Properly installed heating appliances can reduce the risk of fire and other accidents in your home.
Be sure to have all your heating appliances inspected by a professional to ensure that they are properly supported and safe to use. For example, if your furnace is on the floor, make sure that it’s not leaning against a wall or other object.
You can also reduce your risk of fire by keeping flammable materials, such as newspapers and rugs, away from heating appliances.
Pro-tip: If you don’t frequently use certain appliances, like space heaters or wood stoves, be sure to turn them off when you’re done using them.
7. Install A Programmable Thermostat
A programmable thermostat can help you save money on your energy bills by automatically adjusting the temperature in your home based on your schedule.
Installing one typically costs less than $100, not including the savings you’ll enjoy on your energy bills. This is especially useful for those who like to keep their house at a colder temperature when they’re away from home.
How Programmable Thermostats Work
Programmable thermostats can automatically adjust your heating and cooling levels based on the times and dates that you program into them. For example, if you set the time for 7:00 am – 10:00 am as “away” hours, the thermostat will lower the temperature in your home during that time.
Pro-tip: Choose a thermostat that is compatible with your heating and cooling system. Not all thermostats are identical, so check with your manufacturer before making a purchase.
Stay Warm This Winter, Keep Up With Your HVAC Maintenance
By following these seven HVAC maintenance tips, you can help ensure that your home stays warm and comfortable all winter long. It’s simple, cheap, and easy to get a handle on your heating and cooling, so get started today!
If you found these home tips useful, be sure to check out the rest of our articles on the blog!