The effectiveness of your HVAC system is important during every season of the year, but winter is one of the worst times to encounter a problem. While a summer outage in your cooling system can be mitigated with fans and iced lemonade, in the winter, there may not be enough blankets and sleeves to warm your young ones and elderly relatives if your central heating goes out.
So, if you haven’t already begun checking and prepping your home’s heating system for the coming temperatures, here are some tips for things to look into this fall.
Reduce your Energy Consumption
Drafts are never more obvious then when the exterior temperatures begin to drop. One of the best things you can do to keep your HVAC system in great working order is to locate and seal drafts as soon as possible, once you discover them. a programmable thermostat can also help reduce your energy costs; for example, if you work a regular schedule, and no one is even in your home for a set block of hours every day, your thermostat can be programmed to only turn the heat on when you are in the home. You may also want to invest in a couple of space heaters to reduce the workload on your HVAC system. Energy-saving curtains that reduce drafts and block heat loss are another option that does not take a complete overhaul to implement.
If your home also has a furnace, you should always schedule a furnace inspection. If a furnace is not properly maintained, it will always consume more energy trying to perform to level you expect; your utility bills will reflect this struggle dramatically. Plan ahead, where possible, and keep a yearly schedule of maintenance and repair checks.
In addition, you can reduce your energy consumption when running your heating system by lowering your expectations just a smidge. For example, instead of setting your thermostat to something obviously warm, like 75 degrees, lower the temperature to around 70 or 71 degrees, and bundle up with cozy blankets or long sleeves instead. This means that your system is not going to have to work so hard to maintain your home’s temperature.
Do It Yourself Solutions
Performing an overall cleaning of the major components, changing filters, and laying eyes on replaceable parts like belts are all things that you, as the homeowner can do. These tasks are things that can reveal potential problems that would require a technician’s visit and possible repair. Because your service technician only sees your system once or twice a year, it is important for you, as the person on site daily, to check your system out more often, especially at the strategic seasonal points (fall into winter, and spring into summer). When in doubt, check it out!
Test the thermostat
Before the temperatures really start to plummet, you may want to give your HVAC system a pop quiz, of sorts. Turn the system off one morning, for an hour or two. Then turn it back on, and set the temperature to a level at least 5 degrees higher than the current, ambient temperature in your home. Clock how long it takes your system to reach that temperature. Perform this pop quiz a few different times over a week or two, and you should be able to see if your system is taking too long to reach your desired temperatures, or if it can’t seem to get there at all. If that is the case, you should contact a service technician to come take a look, and see what the problems might be.
If you need to schedule a seasonal checkup for your HVAC system, Metro Express Services is here to help. Give us a call today, and let us get your set for the winter with full maintenance check!