The efficiency of your HVAC system has a significant role to play in your comfort levels. Yet, most of us don’t give our ventilation, heating and air-conditioning equipment the attention that they deserve. It’s only when the air-conditioning conks out, or the heater stops working that we realize we should have been more meticulous with HVAC maintenance.
Irregular HVAC maintenance will result in energy wastage. This can cost you hundreds of dollars in the long run. Some of the common HVAC issues that arise as a result of a lack of maintenance are dirty thermostats, clogged filters, leaky ductwork, unlubricated fan motors, and sooty flues. These will vary depending on how you cool or heat your home and the weather of the place you live in. These HVAC issues can drastically bring down the efficiency of your system.
There are some simple maintenance tasks that you can perform yourself while others require the expertise of a professional. If you’ve used your system for many years and it is at the end of its life, you’ll need a reliable HVAC contractor with expertise in heating and air conditioning. Here are some useful tips that can help you get the best out of your HVAC system.
1. Use Optimal Temperature Settings
While the temperature setting of your thermostat depends a lot on personal comfort, manufacturers typically recommend optimum temperature ranges. Setting your thermostat in this range will make sure that you’re using energy efficiently. Always operate your HVAC system at stable and optimum temperatures by consulting your service technician or owner’s manual. It’s also recommended to avoid changing temperatures often since this can lead to less efficiency.
2. Clean or Replace the Filters
The air filters in most HVAC systems are reusable, but they require thorough cleaning every month. Some HVAC systems come with disposable filters which need to be changed regularly especially during the hotter months. Your air conditioners efficiently go up by up to 15 percent when you clean or replace your filters periodically.
3. Conduct Routine Maintenance Tasks
Having a regular maintenance program for your HVAC system is essential. If you don’t have this in place, contact a qualified HVAC company for semi-annual check-ups. You can undertake smaller tasks such as checking the filters yourself. By doing this you can make sure that all the parts of your system are in good order and working efficiently.
4. Always Test Your Thermostat
Conduct periodic tests to make sure your thermostat is working well. Use a separate device and take a reading of the temperature to make sure that the room is at the temperature that’s displayed on the thermostat. If it’s not, contact an HVAC professional to understand what’s causing the problem.
5. Avoid Keeping Vents Closed
Some homeowners make the mistake of closing the vents in rooms they don’t use, in an attempt to save money. But doing this will have the opposite effect since your HVAC system will have to work harder to maintain temperature levels in your house. So, don’t use books, furniture or other objects to block your vents. Instead, you can create different zones by consulting an HVAC professional.
6. Make Space around Outdoor Units
It essential to maintain your outdoor areas for more than purely aesthetic reasons. Keeping the space around your outdoor unit clear will help your HVAC system get proper airflow and perform optimally. There must be at least a distance of three feet between the unit and any trees, plants or shrubs. Also keep supplies, toys, and garden tools away from it and make sure you clear away any leaves or snow.
7. Check for Issues with Air Ducts
If you find that the temperature in your house is always uneven, the rooms are always dusty or your energy bills are unusually high, you may have some ductwork issues. Get in touch with a professional to inspect your ducts for any leaks or to check if it needs to be cleaned. Not taking care of this immediately could lead to your HVAC system working harder and sky-high electricity bills.
8. Consult a Professional
It’s true that there are some simple HVAC maintenance tasks that you can take care of on your own. But some jobs are better left to professional HVAC technicians. They have the expertise to help bring down your utility costs and improve the lifespan of your unit. They can also educate you about energy issues and home comfort.
As a homeowner, it is important to be aware of the systems that control the comfort levels of your space. Knowing what warning signs to look for and conducting periodic HVAC maintenance tasks can help you save costs and avoid any major repairs. You also be able to prevent newbie mistakes, recognize any troubling signs and take necessary measures accordingly. Following the tips mentioned above will ensure that your HVAC system stays energy efficient and reliable for many years.