What You Should Know About Your HVAC System

What You Should Know About Your HVAC System

A comfortable home starts with an HVAC system that is working at peak efficiency.  Your HVAC system refers to your heating, ventilation and air condition units that work to keep your home comfortable all year round.  As a homeowner the HVAC system is your responsibility to maintain, repair when needed or replace.  Here is what you should know about your HVAC system.

Not all HVAC Systems are the Same

There are a variety of different HVAC systems that are used to heat and cool your home, they can include AC and furnace combinations, gas furnaces or those that have heat pumps.  The type of system you have can make a difference in how efficiently it runs and how it needs to be maintained throughout the year.  Regardless of the type of HVAC unit it should only ever be repaired by a licensed HVAC technician.

MERV Filters

MERV stand for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value and it is how efficiency of you filters are determined.  The MERV rating can be anywhere from 1 to 16.  The higher the number the more efficient your filter is at removing contaminants from the air. Filters with ratings between 13-16 will remove up  to 98% of the contaminants in the air pushed out by your HVAC unit.  You may think the higher the MERV rating the better but that isn’t always the case.  It will mean that your HVAC unit has to work harder and that means it is going to use more energy.  You need the right combination of efficiency and air filtration.  Here is more information on selecting the right filter.

The Right Settings

What makes a comfortable room temperature will vary from one person to another. But you need to choose a comfortable setting that won’t drive your energy bills sky high.  For most people that is 72 degrees.  It is cool enough and your HVAC system will have no problem keeping your home comfortable.  Raising and lowering the temperature will cost you money.

Maintenance is a Must

A well maintained system can last you more than a decade.  Routine maintenance is important and it means that you will spend far less money on repairs in the long run.  Not only that when your HVAC is running efficiently it uses less energy.  The best time to have your system looked at is in the spring or fall.

As a homeowner your HVAC system is your responsibility you should know exactly how it works and how you can maintain it.

Regular Maintenance for Your AC Unit

Regular Maintenance for Your AC Unit

The hot summer weather is here again and you won’t survive without your air conditioning.  The last thing you need is your air conditioning breaking down during the dog days of summer.  If you want to make sure that doesn’t happen then regular maintenance for your AC unit in the spring is key.  You want to catch any problems before you are stuck paying for expensive emergency call outs.  Here is what you need to do.

Clean the Condenser Unit

If you don’t use your air conditioner all year round then you probably just cover it up in the winter and then start it back up when summer rolls around.  Ideally you should clean the condenser with a hose or with water and some mild soap.  This will give you the chance to make sure there are no leaks or cracks that need to be fixed.  Don’t just clean the unit but make sure you clean around the unit as well.

Change Your Air Filters

Clogged and dirty air filters means your AC has to work twice as hard to push cool air throughout your home.  It can also cause condensation to build up on your AC unit.  You should change your filters before summer comes to help your system run better.  If you have the type of filters that can be clean, then clean them with some warm soapy water, if not then get some replacements from your local home improvement store.

Check the Indoor Unit

Assuming you have central air and not a window unit then you need to check the indoor unit as well.  Breakdowns happen just as often because of your indoor unit and you can end up having to call in an emergency repair team to fix it.  Thoroughly inspect all parts of your AC unit before you turn them on.

Get a Tune-Up

Ignore your HVAC unit at your own peril.  Regular maintenance and tune-ups will help your unit last for years.  Ignoring it will drive up your energy costs and you will end up with expensive breakdowns.  A local HVAC company can come in once a year before summer or fall and make sure that you heating and cooling systems are working just fine.  They can also tell you if it is time to replace your old unit for something more energy efficient.  Take care of your HVAC system and it will keep your home comfortable all year round.