It may be hard to believe, but winter is finally on its way out! Spring is coming! Aside from the beautiful blooms that will be popping up everywhere in the coming days, we can all also look forward to switching your heater back to normal air conditioning. However, your air conditioner has been taking a well-deserved break all this winter while you’ve been running the heater; you might need a little help bringing your air conditioner out of hibernation. These tips can help you check over your HVAC system before making the spring switch.
Take a test drive.
The best way to determine if there are any issues you might need to address with your air conditioner is to turn it on for a full-cycle run before you really need it. You might want to wait for the warmest part of the day, of course, so you don’t freeze yourself out as you perform the test; but once you begin the evaluation, here are some things to watch out for.
- Listen for strange sounds, like knocking or banging.
- Take note of how long it takes to cycle on, and then back off again. Also, pay attention to any strange, mid-cycle stops your system makes.
- Notice if there are any unusual odors.
- Don’t just trust the thermostat; pay attention and see if your home actually feels
- Walk throughout the house, and make sure all the vents are open and unblocked.
- Stand outside your home, and listen to the unit as it cools. Pay attention to any odors, debris, or discharge on or around the unit.
Overall, take detailed notes, and if anything seems strange, notify your HVAC service company. What may seem disastrous to you may in fact be minor, but you should allow the professionals to make that call.
Schedule Maintenance and Cleaning.
In order to maintain a high level of efficiency from your HVAC system year after year, yearly seasonal-change maintenance sessions are high recommended. Often, at pre-spring and pre-fall, your service technicians will do a complete and thorough check of your system. This usually includes
- An inspection of the entire unit, as well as repair and replacement of any worn-out parts.
- Lubrication of mechanisms.
- Changing the air filters.
- Cleaning in and around the unit itself.
- Checking for loose seals, cracks, or leaks in the system.
Winter can be harsh on your home. Sometimes, things will be worked loose in the high winds and cold temperatures, and flying debris can cause damage around windows and doors, as well as in attics and basements. So, the pre-spring checkup is a great time to locate and seal leaks and cracks to reduce draftiness before the hot summer sun begins beating down. This will keep your HVAC system even more efficient, preventing it from working so hard to cool your home. You may also want to consider adding extra insulation; it is often the most cost-effective solution to increase the efficacy of your HVAC system and reduce your monthly utility costs.
Request an air duct test.
Your air ducts are one of the least-taken-care-of components of your HVAC system. You can ask your technician about testing your ductwork, and if necessary, performing a cleaning. This can remove dust, dirt, debris, pollen, toxins, pet dander, and many other types of allergens and contaminants that build up along the walls of your duct system. This buildup can
- Decrease your HVAC system’s efficiency
- Run up your energy use and utility costs
- Create a fire hazard
- Increase the likelihood that you will suffer from allergic reactions during the highly pollenated summer season.
Check the functionality of your thermostat.
If there is any one single thing you can do to lower your energy costs when the mercury climbs this summer, it is to ensure that your thermostat is working properly. The best way to do this is to check that the actual ambient air temperature is the same as what the thermostat is showing. If there is a mismatch, your HVAC will be working harder for no reason. You may also want to install a programmable thermostat, which can save you buckets in the long run by reducing energy consumption and scheduling errors.
If you are in the market for a professional HVAC service company, you may want to consider the great folks here at Metro Express Services. We have experts with years of servicing heating, cooling, and ventilation systems in our central Texas area; we are your best choice for all your service needs. Give us a call today!