Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) units make our homes more comfortable to live in. The heat in the winter and cool in the summer, keeping the inside the perfect temperature. But having to replace or repair your HVAC unit can be a costly endeavor and one that always comes at the most inopportune time. While this situation is never ideal, it is at least preventable as long as you follow the proper steps.
HVAC units undergo plenty of strain through their constant use and require proper care and maintenance to extend their life. Putting in the time to carry out this maintenance is very worthwhile because fully replacing an HVAC unit is a considerable expense. No HVAC unit will last forever, but proper care can help yours continue working as long as possible.
Through five simple maintenance tasks, you can ensure that your HVAC unit will work as expected and without fear of it breaking down in the cold of winter or the heat of summer.
1. Change Air Filters Regularly
HVAC units work by repurposing the air inside our homes and forcing it through either a heated or cooled core. When the unit pulls the air, it draws it through an air filter that removes most pollutants, depending on the quality of the fibers you purchase.
Over time, pollutions build up inside the filter and make it less effective. When this occurs, you may notice your HVAC system not working as expected. The unit has to strain harder to pull the air through the clogged filters. The machine has to work overtime to provide appropriate temperature air and it doesn’t filter as effectively.
Replace the filter every three months, and you should notice a huge difference in your HVAC system’s performance. This maintenance only takes a few minutes, and filters are sold at most home improvement stores.
2. Control the Thermostat
In most older homes, the HVAC unit comes with a traditional manual thermostat. You set it to the temperature you prefer and let the machine do the rest. You turn it off when you’re done or adjust to a different temperature on your own. If you notice that your house fails to reach the desired temperature, you might want to consider replacing your thermostat before the HVAC unit.
In most situations, you should use an automatic or programmable thermostat and let the machine adjust itself accordingly. You set the temperature you prefer during certain times, and the HVAC unit does the rest. Now, you won’t have to worry about leaving the unit turned on all day and night. It turns itself off until it drops above or below a certain temperature.
3. Clean HVAC Components
Your HVAC unit has a lot of moving parts and components that require slightly more maintenance. You should be able to clean most of these components on your own, without the need for a professional.
- Ensure the fan is working properly
- Clean the drain lines
- Keep the outdoor unit clear of debris and other blockages
- Clean the heat pump
- Clean the vents
Before you begin dismantling or cleaning any of these parts, always do your research and follow a guide. The worst situation you can be in is making the HVAC unit worse off than it originally was.
4. Check for Damages
While you take time to clean different parts of your HVAC unit, you should keep an eye out for any signs of damages, leaks or other concerning issues.
You will want to check the external unit for cracks or breaks. Inspect it while it is running and while it is turned off. You should also check the connections leading into the house and any that you see inside, specifically through the ventilation system.
5. Schedule HVAC Tuneups Twice a Year
HVAC units are not indestructible, and with time, their components begin to wear down. Before the damages become too pervasive, you should always schedule at least two HVAC tune-ups or maintenance checks each year. These tune-ups will help guarantee the longevity and functionality of your unit long into those cold and warm months.
You should always schedule a professional visit during spring and fall seasons before you need to constantly run your unit. If you live in areas that are warmer or cooler year-round, you might want to consider more frequent visits. This way, your technician can detect and repair any minor issues before they become major — and expensive — problems.
Cost of Replacing an HVAC System
Having to replace your entire HVAC system can be costly. Regular maintenance can help prevent system failure and increase the longevity of your equipment. Most systems have a lifespan of about 15-20 years, but accidents do happen.
Predicting the cost of a new unit varies based on a variety of different characteristics. When you are shopping for another unit, you will want to take into consideration the size of your home and how that ties in with the size of your machine. Bigger homes will require a bigger unit to fully heat and cool the area.
You will also need to consider the different functions and features you want your unit to have. Features to consider should be a variable-speed motor, smart thermostat and a zoning system.
On average, the cost of replacing your entire HVAC system can range from $10,000 to $40,000, with repairs ranging from $150 to $2,000. These costs will vary depending on the system you purchase and the type of repairs that need to be done.
Prevent Pricey Repairs with Routine HVAC Tuneups
HVAC preventative maintenance is essential for making sure that your system is in full working order. Hiring skilled technicians to inspect and maintain your HVAC system ensures that you can trust your system to work properly when you need it the most. No one wants to be stuck with a broken machine and a costly bill.
Don’t wait until it’s too late. With regular maintenance and cleaning, you can better protect your unit and increase its overall lifespan. These five simple and easy steps will ensure that you utilize the HVAC system to the best of its capabilities.
If you have any further questions regarding the quality of your HVAC unit or would like to schedule a maintenance check, contact Year Round today. Call us at 909-463-7900 or contact us online and see how we can help keep your house perfectly heated and cooled.