Slowly but surely, the summer heat is giving way to crisp fall days. Eventually, we will be on the way to our first freeze and it will be time to turn on the heat for the first time in many months. There is always a little bit of dread when you switch the thermostat from “cool” to “heat”. We cross our fingers, maybe say a little prayer, and wait for the kick and burning smell that means it’s working. Wouldn’t you like to feel more confident when you twist that thermostat into the red this year? You can! It just takes a little preparation that you can start right now.
Change Your Filters
It’s time for HVAC professionals’ favorite song. We sing it over and over again. Change your filters! Yes, the first and most important step in preparing for winter is to change your filters. You should change them at least every 90 days (more often if your owner’s manual says so) anyway, but it’s a good idea to swap it out a bit early if you’re about to use the heat for the first time. You should also clean your air vents in each room to get rid of any dust and debris.
Schedule a Maintenance Visit
After you change your filters and clean your air vents, you’ll want to brag to someone who will really care and give you a high 5 for your effort. Your kids and Facebook friends aren’t great candidates for this, but your HVAC technician sure is. Invite them over for a visit. After they praise your cleaning and filter changing skills, they can thoroughly inspect your unit for any issues that could cause a disaster later on. They check for air or fluid leaks, dirt buildup, faulty components and more. It’s a small investment that could keep more money in your wallet down the road by catching problems early. I may also keep you from having to deal with a broken system when it’s already cold outside.
Turn It On Before You Need It
Even after changing your filters and getting your routine check-up, it’s still a good idea to turn your unit on and let it run for a bit before you really need it. Even with maintenance, parts can still break and unexpected things can happen. Doing this is your triple check that everything is in order before you really need your system to keep you warm.
The above steps are a great foundation for your winter preparation, but here are a few more ideas for those of you who REALLY want to make the most of your HVAC system this winter.
- If you haven’t already, make sure that your outside unit is clean and clear of debris. Then, consider installing a breathable cover or cage to keep leaves, sticks, and other junk away.
- Program your thermostat for efficiency. An efficient system is one that won’t break down from overuse. You’ll save on your electricity and gas bills, too.
- Consider installing additional insulation. Insulation keeps warm air in and cold air out (and in summer, vice versa), so the more you have in good condition, the more efficient your HVAC system will be. Speak with your technician when they visit your home to see if they recommend more or replacing insulation.
Ellis AC and Heating Is Your HVAC Partner
Whether you’re preparing for the future or dealing with a problem in the present, Ellis AC and Heating is here for you. With over 45 years of service in the DFW metroplex under our tool belts, you can trust us to keep you comfortable all year long. Give us a call today to schedule your maintenance appointment, or put us in your contacts so we’re handy when you need a repair. We look forward to serving you!