A Seasonal Guide for Caring for Your HVAC Unit

Your heating and cooling systems work year round to keep your home and family comfortable. To keep these systems working efficiently and as trouble-free as possible, you need to give them routine care. Let’s look at a seasonal car guide for your HVAC unit.

Every Season

There are certain tasks you should do every season of the year to keep your heating and cooling systems running at their best.

  • Replace the air filter. Check them once a month and replace at least once every 90 days.
  • Remove debris, leaves, and trash from around outside units. Air needs to flow freely.
  • Inspect the refrigerant lines coming into the house. Do this monthly to ensure there are no leaks.
  • Make sure the unit is level. If not level, it may not work properly.
  • Keep vents and air returns clear.

Spring

When the first warm breezes of spring arrive, it’s time to start thinking about the hot weather that’s coming quickly.

Schedule an appointment to have your cooling system checked by an HVAC professional. The technician will clean it thoroughly, verify it’s in good working order, make any adjustments needed for efficiency, and let you know if any repairs are needed. It’s best to take care of them in spring than experience a preventable breakdown on the hottest day of summer.

If you are getting out the equipment to do a deep spring cleaning of your home, put your vents on your list. Dust the vents and wipe them down with a damp cloth. This will help ensure clean air flow. Take a look inside the vents at the air ducts. Do they need a thorough cleaning? You should get the ducts cleaned every few years to ensure good air quality.

Summer

The hot summer months are when you want to be inside enjoying the cool air. But, when you are outside, you need to pay attention to your HVAC unit.

Take a moment to consider what’s around the outside unit. Do you have bushes or trees overhanging the unit, dropping leaves into its inside? That’s not good. Trim back the overhanging branches. Also, take care not to blow grass clippings into the unit.

Make sure you have at least two feet between the unit and surrounding plants. You want easy access for maintenance and repairs. Plus, it helps keep plenty of air flowing around the system.

Fall

Fall’s cooler breezes brings falling leaves and dropping temperatures.

It’s time to think about your heating system. The early fall is a great time to have an HVAC technician come out and give it a tune-up. As with the spring maintenance on the cooling unit, the heating system will get a thorough cleaning and any needed adjustments. The technician will also check to see if there are any repairs needed.

Another thing to consider during the fall is all the leaves coming down. At least once a week, you need to be out there raking the leaves away from the outside unit. If the air cannot flow freely around the unit, it can cause it to work harder, driving up repair and energy costs.

If you use natural gas or wood for heating, it’s time to change the batteries in your carbon monoxide detectors. Safety first.

Winter

The cold winter winds make you just want to huddle in the warmth inside the house. However, even the cold temperatures of winter don’t stop the need for maintenance on your HVAC system.

If your outside unit is only for the air conditioner, cover it for the winter. This will prevent the build up of ice and snow, as well as the accumulation of dead leaves. That will make turning it back on in the spring that much easier.

It’s also a good time to pour a cup of bleach down the condensate drain. This is the pipe that takes water run-off from your inside air handler and moves it outside the house. It can get clogged with mold and mildew. A cup of bleach can prevent a clog.

Routine maintenance will keep your HVAC unit working at its best. Which task will you do today?

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