As the cold temperatures chill the better portion of the country, many homeowners are putting a heavy strain on their heating systems. In a few short months, the strain will be to keep homes cool. To ensure the home stays comfortable all year long, homeowners need to provide the proper care for their HVAC system.
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Starting with the Thermostat
Although often underappreciated, the thermostat in the home is probably the most important aspect of a home’s HVAC system. This tiny unit controls everything heating and cooling related. When there is a problem with the system, troubleshooting your thermostat is the first step.
The home’s thermostat keeps track of the temperature in the home and adjusts the heating and cooling systems as necessary to keep the environment just right. Damaged wires, improper calibration, or even a bad battery or fuse could pose serious issues in keeping a home comfortable.
First, check the settings on the thermostat to ensure they are where they should be. Next, check to see if the temperature on the thermostat is the temperature in the room. After inspecting all wiring, batteries, fuses, and safety switches, if the HVAC is still not properly functioning, it may be time to call a professional.
Cleaning the Filters
One of the most important maintenance tasks any home heating or cooling system needs is cleaning the air filters. These filters prevent dust and debris from entering the system. When air is pulled into the system for heating or cooling, it passes through a filter. The filter collects any dust or debris in the air.
Over time, the filter becomes clogged with the particles it collects from the air. If not replaced or cleaned regularly, it can reduce the airflow into the HVAC system. This reduction will cause the system to work harder to pull in air and put out the right temperatures needed to maintain a comfortable home environment.
Cleaning or replacing the filters as necessary allows the system to function smoothly and efficiently. It also helps to prevent untimely breakdowns and inefficiencies in its performance. Simply cleaning or replacing the filters at the regular intervals recommended by the system’s manufacturer will help ensure the system runs efficiently and meets its life expectancy.
Removing Dust and Debris
The air filters are not the only places where dust and debris can cause problems with an HVAC system. Dust and debris can work their way into almost any area of the home, including your HVAC system. It is a good idea for homeowners to clean this mess away before using the heating or cooling system in the home.
Opening up the indoor units to gently brush away any dust and debris can help ensure a properly working system. Even the outdoor condenser unit could use a gentle cleaning before use. In addition to clearing the dusty build-up around the units, it is also a good idea to clean around any vents in the home.
Dust and debris can even collect within the ductwork of the home when the system is off. Fortunately, some companies can provide duct cleaning services. Not only can this build-up impede air flow and reduce the efficiency of the HVAC system, but it can also reduce the air quality of the home.
Some other helpful advice for maintaining an HVAC system is to have the system professionally serviced at least once a year. The service provider will ensure the system is functioning properly and efficiently. They can also provide any repairs needed to keep the system running like new.
Alan Roodey is a professional Author and contributor to many sites. He loves to write on various topics.