HVAC Preventive Maintenance in Your Home
One of the primary functions of any home is to provide you and your family with protection from the extreme elements. While we often think of this in terms of protecting us against the wind, rain, snow and worse sorts of precipitation, protection against extreme temperatures is also important. Most homes these days have some sort of HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) system. There’s nothing worse than having your HVAC system break down when you most need it.
That’s why preventative maintenance of HVAC systems is extremely important. A lot of people make the mistake of just letting their systems run until the break down, but by that point it usually costs a small fortune to fix. You are much better off either learning how to perform your own maintenance, or hiring a contractor to perform routine maintenance.
Chances are that your HVAC system will break down someday. Having regular checks will both reduce the chances of having a major and expensive malfunction, ensure that you can get it fixed before anything goes wrong. It can be frustrating to spend a few days in the blistering heat or bitter cold waiting for a repair technician to make it to your home. It’s much better to stay on top of things and head them off before they cause problems.
There are certain aspects of HVAC maintenance, such as refilling coolant, which can only be done by a licensed technician. For that reason it’s often much simpler and more convenient to have a technician just do a regular checkup every spring and fall. There are also certain things to look out for that might help you determine when to a call a repair technician.
For example, you should always pay close attention to the sounds that your HVAC unit makes. It should run relatively smoothly, with no banging or rattling or other abnormal noises. Another thing to look out for is strange smells that may emanate from your HVAC system. It can help to try and pinpoint where the smell is coming from so you can point it out to the technician. Of course, the surest sign that something is wrong with your system is if it isn’t heating or cooling properly. If you see any of these symptoms you should schedule maintenance.
If you want to do something yourself to help keep your HVAC system running smoothly, then the simplest thing to do is to clean it. If you have an outdoor unit, then leaves and dirt can frequently get stuck in or around it. It’s simple enough to brush them out and use a garden house to spray off any caked on grime, but of course you should be very careful. If you want to have a more thorough cleaning of the internals of the unit, you should call a trained service person.
An HVAC technician should be able to detect any potential problems in your system and fix them before your whole unit breaks. It may seem expensive, but it can save a lot of money in the long run.