When you think about winter, you hopefully think about a comfortable evening at home. But every now and then winter decides not to go along with our plans, and we end up shivering in our own homes. You won't always be able to stop a blizzard from showing up, but you can prevent your heating from being ill prepared for winter. Nobody prefers or deserves a faulty furnace, which is why we prepared this checklist for getting your HVAC system prepared for winter.
Five Ways to Prepare Your HVAC for a Winter Blast
1. Wrap up Your Outdoor Unit and Clear the Space Near It
Since most HVAC systems have an outdoor condenser unit to discharge heat, you'll want to see to it that the area close to the unit itself is clear of any yard debris. Clear 5 feet of space or so from any plants or objects. It's also a good idea to ensure it's covered by a bit of tarp or similar material over the winter. This keeps ice and other debris from getting inside the condenser.
2. Clean or Replace the Air Filter
Always check and clean out your air filter, usually located in your furnace's indoor air handler. Dust, pollen, animal dander and many other contaminants can gradually collect in the air filter. If it grows unchecked, your HVAC system might lose efficiency and maybe even become a fire hazard. A fresh air filter allows air to flow more freely, maintaining good ventilation and helping keep indoor air quality higher. To get the most benefit from your filter, make sure to clean or exchange it every few months or according to manufacturer instructions.
3. Clean the Blower
The blower is essential to your Lennox furnace, and as an essential component it can collect a lot of wear and tear. Cleaning it once in a while will help maintain strong performance. Vacuum the area around the blower and clean the blades with a microfiber cloth for optimal airflow. If you’re hearing any strange noises or can't get any circulation from the vents, get a professional technician to check out your blower.
4. Search for Gaps or Dents in Your Furnace
Make sure that your furnace has no visible damage on the inside or outside units. A hole in the air handler or damage to the condenser unit outside could contribute to all sorts of comfort problems, like heat escaping before it moves into your ductwork. If there is significant damage, talk to your local technician at Rapids Sheet Metal Works Inc about checking out the system before the temperatures start falling. This way you can avoid letting a minor flaw in the system transform into a major problem.
5. Test Your Equipment Before It Gets Too Cold
It's always wise to make sure your heating or cooling is running properly before the middle of winter. If you don't, your heating could be unprepared for the first significant drop in temperatures. Conducting a test run of your heating can offer you the chance to detect potential problems right away, while they're still simpler to fix. This also burns off any dust that may have piled up in the air ducts beforehand, eliminating that burnt smell. Once your furnace is in working shape, you can sled away from these HVAC worries.
A Well-Maintained Furnace Is a Great Way to Welcome Winter
Winter weather is going to be on the way before you know it. If you spend some time to get your furnace prepared beforehand, you can spend the all winter enjoying the holidays, having hot cocoa or relaxing with your family inside a warm, cozy home. Be sure to follow the tips above to get your home prepped for next winter!