The changing of the seasons has evolved into a “rite of passage” for a lot of homeowners. When the time comes to switch that old thermostat setting from “Heat” to “Cool,” or vice versa, so too comes the time to prep our HVAC system for the severe Ohio weather that lies ahead.
This is why the changing of the seasons is the best time of year for HVAC maintenance. Having a professional conduct a fast, easy, and affordable tune-up recognizes problems ahead of summer and winter — when we need our HVAC systems to operate faithfully, without any hiccups. And while most of this servicing should be performed by a professional, there are specific measures a homeowner can take on their own during the change of seasons.
To learn more about these do-it-yourself HVAC tips, we at Lewis Center-Powell Heating & Air suggest the following change-of-season maintenance guide.
Seven HVAC Maintenance Steps During Season’s Change in Delaware County, Ohio:
Furnace Filters First
Furnace filters are the first on our list for a few good reasons. First, it’s easy to do. It’s inexpensive. And it goes a long way because the condition of your air filter has a significant impact on the health of your HVAC system, not to mention the quality of the air you breathe and your energy consumption. If you own a furnace filter that you can wash and reuse, make sure you pull it out and clean it. If you have the disposable type, change it. Heading into the winter, this needs to be done religiously, like every month on the same day. Moreover, if you wish to improve the air quality in your home and support that filter, so it lasts longer, you might consider an air purifier for your home, especially if you have furry pets.
The Drainage Hole Under Your AC
Around the bottom of your exterior AC, underneath the evaporator fins, you’ll find a small drainage hole. This drainage hole needs attention often. Be sure to check it during the changing of the seasons. To ensure your AC runs smoothly, experts recommend keeping this drainage hole free and open. However, because the hole is often too small to clean it out and reach with your hands, you might have to use a paper clip or wire, or possibly even a modified coat hanger.
Open Up Your Dehumidifier and Clean it
While they might not seem like a necessity right now, during certain times of the year, dehumidifiers become crucial to home comfort. Season’s change is a good time to guarantee your dehumidifier continues operating well. We suggest taking off its exterior casing and letting the interior dry out before taking a vacuum to it to suck out all the dirt, grime, and debris that tends to gather inside. You might even want to wipe it down before putting the casing back on.
Upkeep on Your Exterior AC
Although your air conditioning unit was designed to work outside of your home and endure the most extreme weather, that does not mean you shouldn’t guard it against Mother Nature when you’re able. When the seasons change here in Ohio, whether it be fall or spring, we recommend taking a closer look at your AC unit and removing any debris or vegetation growing around it. When vegetation starts to grow around it, you should not permit it to get within two feet of the unit. A lot of experts even say you should give it a three-foot radius to be certain. Keeping this “clear zone” protects the space surrounding your air conditioner, which needs to pull in air freely to control the temperature level in your home.
Bathroom Fan Care
All year long, your bathroom fans operate faithfully, and there are times when they become assets. When the seasons change, it’s an excellent time to give them some care to keep them clean and running smoothly. So we suggest taking down their covers and washing them with soap in warm water. While they dry, we suggest using a toothbrush to clean off the fan blades before putting the covers back on. First things first, however: Before starting this project, turn the electricity off to the fan for safety reasons. On a side note, some homeowners take this recommendation a step further during season’s change and wipe off all the ceiling fan blades their home.
Smart Thermostats are Smart
The fall and spring are excellent times to consider a thermostat upgrade. Smart thermostats are smart investments because they pay for themselves fairly quickly with the energy savings and convenience from the busy seasons. Today’s modern smart thermostats let you program your temperature levels beforehand, so you don’t have to adjust that thermostat at the times of day experts suggest for energy savings. As such, you’ll find your home is warm and cozy when you’re at home and needing it. When you’re sleeping or away from home on vacation or work, it adjusts itself automatically to conserve energy. Smart thermostats are “smart” because they study and learn your behavior to optimize savings. As a bonus, they can also be adjusted remotely with your cell phone.
Air Vent Maintenance
Air vents are a major component of your HVAC system that can quickly get blocked up with dirt, dust, and debris if you aren’t careful. When this happens, it can weaken the flow of air so that the air reaching you will not be as cool or as warm as it’s intended to be. To keep this from happening, we advise you to incorporate your air vents into your regular house cleaning routine. While you are doing this, keep an eye out for things in your home that might be obstructing the vents, like curtains, or furniture or boxes, etc. It goes without saying, you should move anything that could hinder the airflow.
Professional Help is Most Important
We hope you get the most out of these seven Do-It-Yourself home HVAC maintenance tips. However, if we emphasize anything here, we want it to be the importance of having a professional HVAC technician look at your system during the changing of the seasons. To lengthen the lifespan of your HVAC system and prevent surprise breakdowns, find a reputable, licensed HVAC contractor with qualified technicians. At Lewis Center-Powell Heating & Air, our friendly technicians are certified, and all of our work is insured. We are a five-star-rated family business built on family values. For more information, please call Lewis Center-Powell Heating & Air today at 614-490-7530, or schedule an appointment online now by following this link.
We always love hearing from our readers!