According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were at least 342,040 heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanics in 2019. These HVAC experts play an essential role in ensuring that the cooling and heating systems inside your residential and commercial building work, as they should. The proper functionality of your HVAC system is imperative in maintaining the quality of your indoor air.
As winter approaches, it’s vital to ensure that your HVAC system is in top-notch condition. Having an HVAC maintenance checklist can help you prepare in advance for any scheduled repairs. Nothing is more frustrating than sudden a breakdown of your heating and cooling system in the middle of the coldest months.
Are you keen to avoid any surprises with your HVAC systems this coming winter? This air conditioning checklist can help you prepare for the chilly weather and avoid any unpleasant surprises.
Table of Contents
Clean or Replace Your Air Filter
Your HVAC system is among the few appliances in your home that runs on a full-time basis. The constant circulation of air over the air filter leads to the gradual trapping of airborne contaminants. Such gradual accumulation of dirt does have eventual implications on the air filter’s ability to function.
Before winter finally sets in, it’s imperative to assess and clean this air filter. Most homes have the air filter located in a central room right in the return air grille. In other cases, your air filter might be in the unit itself inside the blower.
If you haven’t changed the air filter in a while, cleaning it up might not be the best solution. Congested air filters might be a breeding ground for germs. As such you might consider replacing the filter in readiness for the chilly weather.
The CDC estimates that cases of Pneumonia and Influenza often increase two-fold during colder seasons. Keeping your air filters clean is the best way to reduce the risk of winter-related sicknesses.
Examine Your Thermostat
The thermostat plays an integral role in maintaining your home’s temperature within the right levels. Most states record a mean daily temperature that’s below freezing point (32 °F) during winter. If your thermostat is dysfunctional during this cold season, you might have one of the worst winter experiences ever.
If you’re wondering what to include in your HVAC maintenance checklist, then examining your HVAC’S thermostat should be top of the list. It will help to consider upgrading to a smart model if your HVAC system is from an older make.
During the cold winter season, your HVAC tends to overwork. This is necessary to keep the rooms warm at all times. During such chilly winter, your thermostat temperature should be set at 68 degrees Fahrenheit.
If your thermostat isn’t responding when adjusted to a specific temperature, it could either be outdated or experiencing technical issues. Calling in an HVAC technician from our team at Arundel Cooling and Heating to assess the thermostat’s condition before the cold season is imperative. A quick check of the thermostat for functionality before winter can minimize poor functionality.
Clean the Area Around the HVAC Unit
It’s common for plants, vines and shrubs to overgrow during summer. The risk of leaves and other debris accumulating around the HVAC system during the fall is also likely. Such accumulation of shrubs, leaves, and dirt can affect the HVAC system’s functionality due to insufficient airflow.
Are you wondering what to consider in your HVAC maintenance checklist? Clearing the area around the HVAC unit is among the timeless air conditioning maintenance tips. The winter season forces your HVAC to overwork in a bid to generate adequate heat.
If the area around the HVAC is not clear, your system might face reduced capacity. Such grass clippings and other buildups often reduce the airflow in and out of the HVAC system. It would help to shut off the power then disconnect the outdoor unit before embarking on clearing.
You can then use a garden hose to wash any debris around the HVAC. The process of clearance does not require expert intervention. Even so, you might need to call in HVAC experts if the debris around the system is causing functionality failures.
Assess the Wiring and Other Components
Your conditioner’s internal wirings are crucial to its operations. If these connections are faulty, they could affect your systems ability to cool during the long winter season. It’s often advisable that you check the wiring at least once a year just before winter to ensure early detection of any faults in the system.
The process of assessing the wiring involves removing the access panel to check for any sign of overheating. If you notice any melted insulation, this could be a sign that the wiring is faulty. Faulty wiring connections tend to burn down during winter as the system tries to work around the clock to keep your rooms warm.
Other vital inclusions on your HVAC maintenance checklist should include testing the electrical connections. The assessment should focus on the tightness of the electrical test meters and unit capacitors. During this evaluation, it might be possible to detect any other underlying functionality issues.
If you notice any issues with the wiring and other components within the HVAC, it can be the first step towards repairs. It’s advisable to call a professional technician to help you rectify any underlying issues. Some of the wiring faults tend to be delicate and might pose a risk if handled by a nonprofessional.
Check the Condenser Unit’s Fan
The condenser unit serves the role of transporting air from the outdoor and across the condensing coil. This component provides adequate torque into the system. Your HVAC unit needs sufficient torque within constant levels to ensure adequate air pulling into the HVAC unit.
Sometimes the blades on the fan may suffer from cracks and chips due to age. If this is the underlying condition, it’s likely that that the HVAC will not cool as it should. If the system has a worn-out condenser unit fan, it might succumb to overheating.
The other common problem with the condenser fan is the possibility of becoming rusty over time. As winter approaches, it would be essential to consider oiling the fan’s motor bearings. You may also consider support from an HVAC expert if you cannot embark on the maintenance process yourself.
Clean the Air Conditioning Coils
By the time its winter, your HVAC evaporator coils suck in incredibly high dust and dirt levels. While you might change the filters from time to time, the failure to also clean or replace the air conditioner coils may spell trouble.
Are you hoping to avoid a sudden emergence of technical hitches on your HVAC system this coming winter? It would help to pay attention to the evaporator coils.
One of the easiest ways to keep your HVAC unit in check is to clean the coils during fall just before winter. Most of the dirt particles that enter the HVAC unit can reduce the airflow into your system, affecting functionality.
The best way to improve your HVAC unit’s operations is to ensure that these coils are in the best working condition. You could also clean the areas around the coils to ensure that they are clear of any debris and dirt. It’s recommended that you also trim the foliage back at least 0.6 meters to allow for adequate airflow into the system.
Winterize Your Air Conditioner Unit
The winter season can be a challenging period for your outdoor HVAC. Preparing the system for the long cold season could help it serve you for longer in the future. Before starting the chilly season, it’s helpful to winterize the unit in a way that will keep it safe throughout the spell.
Most homeowners prefer to cover their units safely with protective gear over the winter season. The approach ensures that your outdoor HVAC unit is safe from any risk of accumulated snow or hailstorms. It’s essential to consider this vital step, given that it helps protect your HVAC from rust and damage over the winter season.
It might be impossible to keep the moisture away from your HVAC during winter unless you take deliberate measures. Once the unit is well-covered, consider frequent assessments to confirm that the HVAC unit is not soaking in water. If you practice this safety approach, your HVAC will serve you for longer.
All You Need Is This HVAC Maintenance Checklist and a Trusted Expert
Your HVAC system is an integral part of your home. The role of this heating unit is most notable during winter when temperatures slide to their lowest. Adequate maintenance in the fall season just before winter can help you prepare for the chilly weather in advance.
Are you looking to avoid the frustrations of a faulty HVAC system during the cold season? It would help to pay attention to this HVAC maintenance checklist beforehand. With the help of a trusted HVAC expert, you can now ensure that your system is fault free and ready for winter.
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