No homeowner wants to get stuck with a large HVAC repair bill during the middle of winter. Replacing the whole system can cost you a minimum of $10,000 total, and all of the minor repairs that you need to do during the winter can add up too. With the proper maintenance on the HVAC system, including on the heater, you can help your system last longer and can keep it safe from long-term damage.
Check the Thermostat
The first step that every homeowner needs to do is check their thermostat. This can help you see whether things are working the way they should. Two times a year, turn up the thermostat until you hear the furnace kick in. let it run for a bit. If you hear the system continue to run, it is a sign the system is working.
Sometimes the furnace will turn off in just a few minutes. This is a sign that there is a problem known as short cycling. You will need a professional to come take a look to see what they can do. When the thermostat is working well, the heater will only bring out the amount of heat that it needs, which saves energy and helps the unit last a lot longer.
Tune-Up Your Heat Pump
This is a part of the maintenance of your heater that a professional should do. The tune-up needs to occur before it is too cold outside and before it heats up in the summer. This will help catch some of the potential issues before the heat pump has to do lots of work. The professional will look for excessive wear and tear and can get it replaced in plenty of time.
During this tune-up, make sure to have the professional take a look at all parts of the heater and even the air conditioner. This is a good time to figure out if something needs fixed or replaced, saving an emergency later on because you waited too long. In many situations, a quite repair of an item or a quick fix will be enough to help prolong the life of the heater and make it last for many more years.
Replace the Filters
Homeowners will need to check the filters of your HVAC system often. It is a good idea to check these at least once a month and get them replaced every three months. For an oil-fired furnace, you need to also replace the oil filter at least once a year.
When you replace the filters, it can help to improve the quality of the air in your home and can make the heating system more efficient. When the filter gets old, it can cause quite a few issues to the heating system too, so replacing them can help prevent anything getting stuck inside.
Keep the Unit Clean
When you are doing some of the maintenance on your heating system, make sure to clean off the outside of the unit. This is very important in the fall when the leaves may get in the way and start blocking the fan of your unit. Remove the leaves and some other debris to give it room to work well. You may need to remove some of the snow if you get a lot for the winter.
Along with cleaning the outside of the unit, you will need to keep the internal vents clean as well. These vents can often get dirty from pet hair, dirt, and dust. If these vents get blocked, the furnace is not going to run well and the air will struggle to circulate throughout the home. If you notice that the air is not flowing well, it adds stress to the furnace and you need to get it fixed quickly.
Be Careful Not to Overwork the System
One of the best ways for you to keep your heater working well is to reduce the amount of work that it has to do. A good place to start is to check for leaky doors and windows. You want to make sure that the cold air from the winter is not able to seep into your home. If it does, then your heater is automatically working harder to keep you comfortable. This puts a lot of pressure on the system and can make it live for less time than before.
Take some time to walk around the home and check for culprits that could make the home colder. Check the door frames and the window edges. If you notice that there is a draft coming in, then you need to seal the window edges and door frames to keep it warm. This can give the heater a break and will also save you a lot of money when it comes to your electricity bill in the winter.
Hire a Professional
While there are a lot of items that you can do with the heater on your own to help maintain it and give it some extra years in your home, there are also times when you need to call in the professionals to do the work. The right professionals can do routine maintenance on the heater for you, saving time and a lot of money down the road.
Choosing the right professional may take some time, but it is well worth the month. Consider having them come twice a year, once to check the heater and once to check the air conditioner, so that you can have the best comfort for your whole home.
Your heater is a critical component of your home, keeping you warm and cozy during the cold winter months. Maintaining your heater well will go far in helping you to be comfortable and not have the HVAC system crash on the coldest day of the year. With the help of Williams Comfort Air, you can have a team of professionals at your side, providing some of the repair and replacement that your heater will need over time. Contact us today to get started.
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