Fall officially began this past Thursday, Sept. 22nd and although it doesn’t feel like Fall outside quite yet, cooler days are in our near future. If you haven’t had your HVAC system serviced for the upcoming fall and winter weather, now is the perfect time to do some maintenance.
Most heating demands in homes account for 33% of the total energy consumption. So before starting up your heating system for the first time this year, here are some helpful tips on making sure your HVAC system is in tip top shape for the cold weather season.
Clean or Replace Air Filters
The first thing you should do is check your HVAC filter for buildup of dust and dirt. Dirty HVAC filters restrict airflow and reduce the entire efficiency of the HVAC system, causing your heating costs to increase over the fall/winter season. You should clean your air filters monthly, and if you’ve forgotten to clean over the summer, it is probably time for a replacement.
Much like your HVAC filter, dirty and clogged vents can have repercussions for your home’s air quality and heating system’s efficiency. Dirty vents means dust, dirt, allergens and mold could be circulating throughout your home. These things mean poor air quality and potential allergic reactions for family members. Just like your air filters, when vents are clogged, the airflow is reduced and your HVAC efficiency is compromised.
Adjust the Supply Register/Check for Drafts
Cold air falls and hot air rises. So it makes sense that when the weather gets cold, it’s best to open a few of your supply registers on the first floor and close a few on the second floor. This facilitates the heating of your home in a more efficient way. Also, drafts can be a major cause of a cold home when your heating system is running. Windows and doors are the biggest culprits of drafts. Check your seals and frames for signs of wear and damage.
Maintain Your Fireplace
Before you build your first fire of the season, be sure to have your fireplace cleaned by a professional. Months of neglect means possible debris blocking your chimney, or creosote buildup from last year’s fireplace season. Both blockages and creosote are fire hazards that should be taken care of right away.
Schedule an HVAC Inspection
Bi-annual maintenance calls are one of the easiest ways to stop small problems from becoming big ones. It’s also smart to let a professional check out your HVAC system before switching over from AC to heat. This inspection will detect any potential problems and ensure that your HVAC system is working as efficiently as possible. This inspection involves checking filters, inspecting electrical switches, belts, contacts, motors, safety switches, gas pressure and refrigerant levels.
Having regular maintenance on your HVAC system has numerous benefits for you. You’ll save a lot of money in the end due to efficiency in performance and energy consumption. For more questions or a need for a different service, call us at 804.276.2800 and see why W.G. Speeks has been the reliable Richmond, VA heating and air conditioning experts since 1943.