While most people think their HVAC needs the most TLC in the summer and spring, there are still things you should do to prepare your system for fall. Giving it a bit of extra attention will help ensure that you won’t be facing a cold winter night without heating.
Don’t wait until you’re cold and need heating services — check out Bloomington Heating & Air’s top tips for preparing your home for fall and be ready!
If you’re not familiar, weatherstripping is a material used around door and window frames to help create a better seal when closed. While not directly related to your HVAC system, properly installing weatherstripping can help keep warm air in and cold air out when the temperatures start to dip. Doing so also helps in the spring and summer when your AC is working harder.
Ensure your weatherstripping is working effectively by checking that it’s installed around all doors and windows, runs the full length of the frame, and there are no cracks in it. If there’s weatherstripping installed, but you can still feel cold air coming in, it may not be the right size. Weatherstripping is inexpensive and easy to install yourself.
Replace Your Filter
Ideally, you should change your filter every month, but doing so can be easier to forget when the temperatures drop, and you’re using your AC less. Still, even when you start using the heater, your HVAC system will still pull air through the filter, which, if dirty, can significantly impact the system’s efficiency. In addition to changing the filter regularly, you’ll want to make sure you’re using one with the correct MERV rating.
Having a rating that’s too high means your unit will have to work harder to pull air through the filter, reducing efficiency, increasing utility costs, and taxing the system unnecessarily. On the other hand, having a rating that’s too low means that your system isn’t filtering air as well as it should. If you’re unsure what type of filter you should be using, contact a local HVAC company that can help.
Clean The Condenser Unit & Coils
The condenser unit and evaporator coils are responsible for regulating temperatures, and both are located outside. These components should be kept clean all year round, but falling leaves and gusty autumn winds can cover them in unwanted dirt, grime, and debris. There may also be leftover debris from summer lawn clippings, so it’s a good idea to occasionally take a walk around the unit to ensure that everything is cleared away.
When the condenser unit and coils are surrounded by clutter, the HVAC system may not work as well. You don’t want to be in the middle of a cold spell when your heat decides not to work!
Run The Heat
Running the heat before you actually need it is a proactive way to ensure it works when you do. Before the weather starts getting too chilly, open a couple of windows and let your heater run for a few minutes. You’ll probably detect a burning smell, thus the open windows, but this is no cause for alarm. This smell is usually caused by dust that’s accumulated on the heating components being burned away.
If there are any issues with your heater, such as not heating correctly or turning off unexpectedly, you can make an appointment for heater repair right away, so you’re not caught unprepared for winter.
The best time to discover an issue is before it actually affects you. With regular HVAC maintenance, potential problems can be found before they cause you inconvenience or become costly repairs. Maintenance can even prevent breakdowns from occurring in the first place. Bloomington Heating & Air offers comprehensive maintenance that includes routine maintenance and discounts on repairs.
Schedule your HVAC maintenance today and get ready for winter before the weather is at its most extreme! Also, check out our FAQ page for more information on your HVAC system.