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A quick look around your home should reveal that your most expensive appliance is your HVAC system. Unless you happened to choose a deluxe kitchen appliance set, your HVAC system is probably what put you back the most, which is why it makes sense that you want to protect your investment. Protecting your HVAC system is the best way to ensure that you receive the best quality of cool air over the summer months and don’t have to worry about any unexpected heating and AC repair visits.
Of course, knowing you don’t want heating and AC repair visits to deal with in the heat of the summer is different than actually taking action to protect against them. A lot of people don’t realize the value of HVAC maintenance until it is too late. Like most things in your home, proactive maintenance is the best way to guard against future problems. There are a few things that you can do on your own as the summer season approaches in Richardson, TX, and a few maintenance tasks that you will want a professional heating and AC repair company to take care of for you.
The best way to ward off any unexpected heating and AC repair visits is by contacting a local HVAC company to schedule an annual maintenance visit. During this visit, the maintenance techs will clean your system thoroughly, inspect all components to make sure that nothing is wearing down unevenly, and then repair any parts that look like they will need to be replaced within the year. Proactively taking care of these issues will help prevent you from being stranded in the middle of the summer without any AC.
The following is a guide to ways you can help protect your HVAC system and the benefits of hiring professional heating and AC repair companies to perform maintenance. By doing your part and hiring a professional to clean your system at least once a year you can save money on energy costs, lengthen the lifespan of your HVAC system, and prevent uncomfortable breakdown situations. If this sounds like a winning combo to you, keep reading to find out just how accessible it is.
Replace Your Air Filters
One of the most important things you can do to help improve the health of your air conditioning system is to change your air filters regularly. Believe it or not, something as small as an air filter can eventually shut down your entire HVAC system and lead to heating and AC repair if you don’t stay on top of things. This is because all of the air produced by your HVAC system blows through the air filter. That means your air filter contributes to the quality of all of the air in your home. Most people don’t open the windows during the hot summer months in Richardson, TX, so the only fresh air in your home is coming from your HVAC system.
Now imagine you don’t change your air filters. That means the only “fresh” air in your home is blowing through an air filter that is clogged with dust, dander, and even possibly mold. If you saw this process in front of you every day you would be appalled, so try to imagine that to help keep on track with air filter changes. Just because you cannot see the filth in your air filter does not mean that it does not exist.
Eventually, if your air filters get too dirty then your fan will have to work harder to push air through them which will eventually increase the wear and tear on your fan and cause a breakdown. Then before you know it you will need to deal with heating and AC repair in the middle of the summer. All of the above scenarios are preventable by just changing your air filters.
Most HVAC technicians will recommend that you change your air filter about once every three to five months depending on the amount of traffic or dust that accumulates in your home. A home with small children and pets may benefit from changing its air filters regularly while a home with just one person in it may find that air filters can last closer to five months. If you don’t know how to change your own air filter, this is a good question to ask your heating and AC repair technician during their next maintenance visit. They can show you the proper way to change your filters and offer you suggestions based on the condition of your current air filter.
Clean Off Your Outdoor Unit
The outdoor unit of your AC system sits outside, which means that it is susceptible to all of the Texas weather as well as natural contaminants. Acorns, rodents, leaves, and more can all easily fall into the cage that protects the outdoor AC so you need to do your best to keep it clean. You don’t want to plant any bushes, trees, or plants near it that shed flowers or seeds and you want to keep everything pruned so that it doesn’t start to grow into the cage.
If you are comfortable, you can attempt to clean the fins of your outdoor AC unit using a hose attachment with your vacuum. However, you want to make sure you use a soft attachment and you are very careful with the fins as some are not replaceable. In addition, you will need to carefully look over the owner’s manual to make sure you correctly remove the metal cage that protects the fins and can put it back when you are done.
This can be a complex process, so we suggest that if you leave the cleaning process to a trained heating and AC repair technician. If you hire us, we will clean the outdoor AC unit including the fins of your AC unit as part of our annual maintenance process. The benefit of allowing us to clean the outdoor unit is that while we clean we will also inspect every component of your home AC unit so we can troubleshoot any problems that may eventually cause you to need heating and AC repair down the road. Therefore, you get the satisfaction of knowing that the unit is clean and that it is in good working shape and should not cause you any issues this summer in Richardson, TX.
Replace Your Old Thermostat with a Programmable Thermostat
Another great way to save money and ensure your HVAC system is working smoothly is by updating your thermostat. A lot of older Richardson, TX homes still have older thermostats that are simply set by turning a dial. While these can be accurate, they are older and tend to be less accurate as each year passes. In addition, they cannot be set in advance which means that your home has to stay at one temperature all day whether you are in it or not. Besides, these older models tend to cause issues that require heating and AC repair visits down the road. If your thermostat is not working correctly then your HVAC system will not cool the home regardless of how well it is functioning because it is being told the wrong reading by the thermostat.
With this in mind, you can save money by upgrading your thermostat and ensuring that your home is always being cooled properly. A programmable thermostat allows you to set the temperature in your home accurately instead of guessing with a dial. Also, it lets you turn the system on and off in advance so that you can alter the cooling needs of your home when you leave the home. For instance, while you are at work and the children are at school the system can be programmed to automatically increase the temperature in your home so that your AC does not have to work as hard. Then you can set it to cool your home off to a more comfortable temperature an hour before you come home.
Over time adjusting the temperature based on your actual consumption times will save you a lot of money, especially in the heat of the summer when our AC will be working at peak levels. Think of the adjustments as giving your AC a break during the day and you only have to program changes once so long as you are comfortable with the results. While you won’t notice the break, your AC will and this will help lengthen its lifespan and decrease the daily wear and tear on your AC which can help prevent heating and AC repair visits.
While some people are comfortable with changing their thermostats on their own, the process involves electrical wiring and learning to work a new gadget all at once. That is why most homeowners prefer to call a heating and AC repair company to handle the upgrade for them. If you prefer the convenience and a hassle-free experience, we can offer you a solution that solves your problem quickly.
Recheck Your Insulation
If it seems like your HVAC system is always cycling, but you have already had a heating and AC repair visit and know that there is nothing wrong with it then there is a good chance that the air it is producing is seeping out of your home. If large amounts of cold air are escaping from your home then your HVAC system will have to keep cycling to attempt to keep up with the air loss.
One of the best ways to improve the quality of air in your home and help reduce the strain that your HVAC system is under is to beef up your insulation. Start by checking out the attic of your home since this is where most heat loss occurs since heat rises. Then look at the walls and the insulation you have around the doors and windows of your home. Identify trouble spots and then hire someone to provide effective insulation solutions. You should see your energy bills drop significantly as a result and notice that your HVAC system starts cycling less. Fewer cycles mean less wear and tear which also means you shouldn’t need heating and AC repair as frequently.
Check Your Window Dressings
While looking at the insulation around your home, you might also take note of the window dressings you have in place. If you want to block heat from outside from entering your home and forcing your HVAC system to work harder you need to effectively cover the windows in your home. This means that all of your drapes and blinds should be closed during the heat of the summer day. If you have windows that don’t have blinds or drapes or only have shears covering them, then you might consider investing in a few.
Buying blinds for your home windows is a lot less expensive than buying a new HVAC system prematurely because of increased wear and tear or paying for frequent heating and AC repair visits in Richardson, TX. If you have young children in your home then consider the stringless smart blinds which are now easy to find and affordable solutions. At the very least consider making changes to the windows that directly face the sun to see the most effect on your energy bills.
After making these adjustments the best thing you can do is hire a professional heating and AC repair company in Richardson, TX to come out for an annual service visit. One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating of Dallas is happy to schedule a maintenance call or help you with any heating and AC repair issues that you may be facing.