Did you know that low airflow occurs more than 50% of the time in heating and cooling systems installed in the US? Unfortunately, poor airflow can lead to thermal discomfort. More than that, it can result in higher energy bills.
On the bright side, proper maintenance can prevent most problems with your heater and AC unit.
To that end, we came up with this guide listing some of the best ways to keep your HVAC system in tip-top condition. Read on to discover what you can do to ensure uninterrupted thermal comfort all year round.
Table of Contents
Keep the HVAC System Clean and Obstruction-Free
Low airflow in a heating and cooling system can result from dirt, debris, and residue build-up. For starters, layers of filth can obstruct HVAC air vents, grilles, ducts, and exhausts. In a cooling system, residue can act as a sort of insulation on evaporator coils, inhibit cooling.
The very least you can do to avoid those issues is to change or clean your HVAC filters once or twice a month. Vacuum your air vents, grilles, and registers at least once a month, too. You should also ensure nothing is in the way of the indoor unit, such as furniture.
As for the outdoor unit, get rid of obstructions, such as piles of dead leaves or overgrown foliage. Be sure to maintain a two-foot clearance on all sides of the outdoor HVAC unit.
Inspect Ducts and Get Leaks Patched Up
According to experts, ducts that leak 20% of heated or cooled air can make an HVAC system work 50% harder. Unfortunately, it’s pretty common for ducts to waste up to 40% of conditioned air. That means leaks can make heating and cooling systems work up to 100% harder!
For that reason, it’s imperative to give your ducts a visual and auditory inspection at least once a year. Look for cracks, dents, and holes, and listen for sounds of rushing or hissing air. If you notice any of these signs, you most likely have leaky ducts, so it’s best to get an HVAC expert to fix them for you.
Schedule Your HVAC System for Professional Maintenance
Whether you have room AC units or a central heating and cooling system, get them tuned up at least once a year. It’s best to get your space heater serviced in the fall and your AC during spring. These pre-seasonal maintenance services often cost less since techs aren’t that busy yet.
Before that, though, check your country or city’s HVAC contractor license requirements first. For example, some places in the US mandate HVAC workers to carry licenses or certificates. The EPA also requires AC and refrigeration technicians to have refrigerant handling certification.
If you live in Australia, hire only Australian Refrigeration Council (ARC) members. The ARC is the organization authorized to license companies providing AC services. RMS Heating and Cooling, All Climate Solutions, and Home HVAC Services are ARC members.
Make Heating and Cooling Systems Last Longer With Proper Maintenance
Keep in mind that heating and cooling systems can last for more than a decade, so long as you take good care of them. They also perform better and are more energy-efficient. So, be sure to follow our maintenance tips, as they can help you get the most out of your home HVAC.
Ready for more informative home appliances, cleaning, and maintenance tips like this? Then feel free to check out our other how-to guides!