When you imagine winter, you hopefully imagine a cozy evening in your warm 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 might not be able to stop a blizzard from showing up, but you can prevent your furnace and other HVAC equipment from being ill prepared for winter. Nobody likes or deserves a faulty furnace, which is why we prepared this checklist for getting your HVAC system prepped for winter.
Five Ways to Prepare Your HVAC for a Cold Winter
1. Wrap up Your Outdoor Unit and Clean the Space Nearby
Since most HVAC systems have an outdoor condenser unit to release heat, you'll want to see to it that the area surrounding it is free of any yard debris. Clean 5 feet of space or so from any plants or sticks. It's also smart to make sure it's protected by a section of tarp or similar material over the winter. This keeps ice and other debris from getting inside the condenser.
2. Rinse or Replace the Air Filter
Always evaluate and clean out your air filter, customarily found in your furnace's indoor air handler. Dust, pollen, animal dander and many other contaminants can slowly build up in the air filter. If it continues unchecked, your heating can lose efficiency and potentially even become a fire hazard. A clean air filter allows air to flow easily, maintaining adequate ventilation and helping keep indoor air quality high. To get the most benefit from your filter, make sure to clean or replace it every two or three months or in line with manufacturer instructions.
3. Clean the Blower
The blower is crucial to your Lennox furnace, and as an essential component it can accumulate a lot of wear and tear. Cleaning it now and then will help maintain strong performance. Vacuum the area around the blower and rub the blades with a microfiber cloth for optimum airflow. If you’re hearing any strange noises or aren't getting any circulation from the vents, call a professional technician to examine your blower.
4. Look for Gaps or Dents in Your Furnace
Make sure that your furnace is free of visible damage on the inside or outside units. A hole in the air handler or damage to the condenser unit outside can contribute to all kinds of comfort problems, like heat leaking out before it reaches your ductwork. If there is significant damage, consult your local technician at Central Air LLC about inspecting the system before the temperatures start falling. This way you can avoid letting a slight crack in the system transform into a major problem.
5. Test Your Heating Before It Gets Too Cold
It's always practical to make sure your furnace is working properly before its busiest season. If not, your heating could be unequipped for the first real drop in temperatures. Conducting a test run of your heating can give you the chance to notice potential problems then and there, while they're still simpler to fix. This also burns off any dust that may have gathered in the air ducts over the fall, removing that burnt smell. As soon as your furnace is in working condition, you can sled away from these HVAC worries.
A Well-Prepared Furnace Is a Great Way to Welcome Winter
Winter weather will be heading this way before you know it. If you make an effort to get your furnace prepared beforehand, you can spend the winter enjoying the holidays, having hot cocoa or hanging out with your family inside a warm, cozy home. Don't forget to follow the tips above to get your home prepped for next winter!