When you imagine winter, you hopefully imagine a comfortable evening at home. But sometimes winter doesn't feel like going along with our plans, and we're stuck shivering in our own homes. You may not be able to prevent a blizzard from rolling through, but you can prevent your furnace and other HVAC equipment from being unprepared for winter. Nobody prefers or deserves a broken-down furnace, which is why we made this checklist for getting your HVAC system ready for winter.
Five Ways to Prepare Your HVAC for a Winter Blast
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. Clear 5 feet of space or so from any vegetation or rocks. It's also smart to ensure it's protected by a piece of tarp or similar material during 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 located in your furnace's indoor air handler. Dust, pollen, animal dander and many other kinds of debris can slowly build up in the air filter. If it goes unchecked, your HVAC system might lose efficiency and possibly even become a fire hazard. A clear air filter helps air to flow smoothly, maintaining adequate ventilation and helping keep indoor air quality higher. To secure the most benefit from an air filter, make sure to clean or exchange it every two or three months or in line with manufacturer instructions.
3. Clean the Blower
The blower is essential to your Lennox furnace, and as an integral component it can attract a lot of wear and tear. Cleaning it on occasion will help it continue working at its best. Vacuum the area around the blower and rub the blades with a microfiber cloth for optimal airflow. If you’re hearing any odd noises or can't get any circulation from the vents, call a professional technician to check out your blower.
4. Check 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 could worsen all sorts of comfort problems, such as heat leaking out before it reaches your ductwork. If there is obvious damage, speak with your local technician at GV Heating & Air about inspecting the system before the temperatures begin to drop. This way you can avoid letting a slight gap in the system transform into a major problem.
5. Test Your Heating Before It Gets Too Cold
It's always smart to make sure your furnace is running properly before its busiest season. If you don't, your furnace could be unequipped for the first significant drop in temperatures. Performing a test run of your heating can provide the opportunity to recognize potential problems right away, while they're still simpler to fix. This also removes any dust that will often have piled up in the air ducts beforehand, removing that burnt smell. Once your furnace is in working order, you can sled away from any HVAC worries.
A Well-Prepared Furnace Is a Great Way to Welcome Winter
Winter weather will be on its way before you know it. If you make an effort to get your furnace ready in advance, you can spend the all winter enjoying the holidays, having hot cocoa or spending time with your family inside a warm, cozy home. Remember to follow the tips above to get your home ready for next winter!