If you’re a homeowner, chances are you’ve had some experience with the heating and cooling system in your home. Your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system is an integral part of your home because it keeps things comfortable year-round. Summer was especially hot in Salt Lake City this year, with the temperature touching 100 degrees for at least 34 days. Climate change and the general warming effect of Utah’s urbanized valley region, bereft of a lot of trees, can be the twin drivers of this temperature increase.
As a resident, you probably realize that during Summer, your air conditioning system needs to be up and running to prevent any discomfort to you and your loved ones. Sometimes problems arise that can cause your HVAC system to malfunction or break down completely. Luckily, you can take simple steps to keep your system working smoothly.
1. Get Regular Maintenance Done
Regular maintenance is important for all HVAC systems, especially those that have been installed more than five years ago. As equipment ages and parts wear out, getting a system running at peak efficiency is more difficult. You can extend the life of your system by having regular maintenance performed by skilled professionals. If you’re unsure about when to have your unit serviced or if you have questions about maintaining other home appliances such as refrigerators or freezers, seek out a firm skilled in HVAC repair in Salt Lake City with experience answering these kinds of questions and providing quick and sustainable solutions. An annual checkup can help you avoid costly repairs in the future. The schedule for this depends on several factors like how often you use your HVAC system, how old it is, and what kind it is, i.e., standard furnace or heat pump.
2. Clean Your Air Ducts and Condenser Coils
You should clean your air ducts to ensure mold and mildew don’t build up when the system is not in use. Always use the right set of tools to prevent any kind of damage. You can use a vacuum, a rotary brush, and a microfiber cloth to clean air ducts. However, we recommend you take help from a qualified professional for the first few times to ensure nothing gets damaged when you try cleaning. Your HVAC system depends on the condenser coils to cool the air that it brings into your home. The coils are located outside the house and can get dirty over time, which will cause a reduction in efficiency and increase operating costs. Cleaning them regularly can help keep this from happening. Locate the condenser unit outside of your house. You may need to turn off the power to it before beginning work. You’ll also want to use protective gear like gloves and eye protection, as some dust can be harmful when inhaled or ingested.
3. Upgrade to a Smart Thermostat
Upgrade to a smart thermostat. Smart thermostats are energy-efficient, programmable devices that allow you to control your home’s temperature from your phone or computer. It automatically adjusts the temperature in your home when you are away and when it is not occupied. Many of these devices also allow you to set timers for waking up or leaving your house at certain times of the day so that the heating and cooling systems will be set at the optimal level before they are needed most.
4. Cover Your Condenser in Winter
If you live in a cold climate and don’t cover the condenser, it can be damaged by water freezing on it. This happens when high winds or snow blow across your home. Salt Lake City winters are quite cold, as we all know. Every year, 500 inches of snow is reported here, and the snow season is pretty long, starting from October till April. Water that freezes on the condenser can also crack it and cause other damage. You’ll want to keep your unit running smoothly for as long as possible, so covering your unit during winter is a great way to do this.
5. Decide Whether to Repair or Replace
Repairs may prove beneficial in certain cases when you are still covered under warranty. Repeated repairs could mean your system is going to be damaged. Think about the future value of your energy consumption. The more time you spend staying at home, the higher your energy consumption will be with a less efficient system. The SEER rating will help you understand the energy efficiency of your HVAC system. SEER represents the seasonal energy efficiency ratio. This rating identifies the average annual energy efficiency in cooling equipment for the full summer months. A high SEER means that cooling systems use less energy.
The government recommends a SEER rating of 15 for split ACs to minimize energy wastage. For the Northern States like Utah, all air conditioners must meet a minimum SEER of 14. You can perform many of these steps yourself and save yourself some money. But an HVAC professional can help you catch problems before they become severe. An HVAC professional will ensure that the system is installed correctly and working as intended, which will help prevent future repairs and replacements.
As you can see, there are many ways to care for your HVAC system. The key is to stay proactive and have the right equipment installed that will take care of all these issues once they arise.