Your car probably has lights on the dashboard telling you when to change the oil or put air in the tires. The HVAC system in your home doesn’t come with warning lights, but keeping up with its maintenance can cut your energy bill and make sure your family is comfortable this winter.
Luckily, you can take simple DIY steps to keep your home’s HVAC system in good condition. Of course, if you have a serious problem or an emergency, the pros at Lee Company are here to help 24/7/365. We have nearly 80 years of HVAC experience.
Clean the air vents
You should vacuum out the air vents regularly. This keeps the vents clean and allows air to flow freely, regulating the temperature in your home.
To get started, use your vacuum cleaner’s brush attachment to remove dust on the outside of the vent grill. Be sure to clean between the slats where dust collects.
Next, loosen the screws and remove the outer covering of the vent or register so you can vacuum the inside of the grill. Clean the inside of the ductwork as far as your vacuum will reach. Then replace the vent cover securely.
Cleaning air vents on a regular schedule will help everyone in your home breathe easier. Consider scheduling air duct cleaning to remove buildup if you notice extensive dirt and grime on your vents.
Replace the air filters
Checking your air filters regularly is one of the best things you can do to keep your HVAC running efficiently. We recommend you check them every month and clean or replace them at least every three months. If you see a lot of dirt on the filter, clean or replace it right away.
Systems use either disposable or permanent filters that remove dust and dirt from the air. If filters become clogged, your furnace could “lock out” and not turn on because of the high temperature. Replacing or cleaning filters on a regular schedule will help the system run smoothly.
Take care of the outdoor unit
Some homes are heated by an outside electric heat pump, where ice can build up on the coils. A malfunctioning unit may run constantly and drive up your energy bill. If you see a huge spike in your monthly electricity bill, make sure the heat pump is not frozen. Call Lee Company to diagnose the problem.
If you heat with gas, your HVAC has an outdoor air compressor that operates when the air conditioning is on. Once you’re finished using the air conditioning for the year, you can place a cover over the outdoor unit. This will keep snow, ice, and cold weather from causing damage during the winter months.
Remember to remove the cover before you turn your air conditioning on again.
Test your thermostat
If you turn on the heat but don’t feel warm air, set the thermostat a few degrees higher until you feel warm air, and then set it back to your desired temperature.
If your thermostat isn’t working properly, you might need to simply replace the batteries. We offer quick tutorials on our website to show you how to operate a programmable thermostat.
You can conserve energy and save money by setting your thermostat to a lower temperature at night or while you’re away. Your home will heat up quickly when you turn your HVAC on again.
If you have Lee Company install a programmable thermostat, you can set it to operate on the schedule you choose. You’ll never wake up or come home to a cold house again. Our tutorials answer frequently asked questions about how to set up your new thermostat.
Replace your old HVAC
A new HVAC system is costly, but if it’s old and inefficient, investing in a new one can save you money by significantly lowering your annual energy bill.
Your HVAC has a SEER rating, which stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It measures the amount of electricity your HVAC’s air conditioning system uses. An old system with a SEER of nine uses about 40 percent more energy than a newer system with a rating of 15. Some systems have SEER ratings that are even higher. With the energy savings, your new HVAC system could pay for itself in just a few years.
Contact Lee Company to learn how HVAC financing can ease the financial burden if your old system breaks down.
Check the coils
Condenser and heating coils can become dirty and cause your HVAC system to become less efficient. These are not parts of the system that you’ll want to attempt to clean yourself. It’s best to call a professional.
Inspect the furnace
If your furnace isn’t heating promptly, the problem could be the pilot light. In some older furnaces, the pilot light is always on. Other furnaces turn on the pilot light when you activate the system. A dirty or faulty sensor could keep the pilot light from working properly. To be safe, call the professionals at Lee Company.
Check on non-HVAC components
Other parts of your home can affect your HVAC system’s performance. Check your windows for drafts and the weather stripping on doors and windows to ensure they are insulated properly. If they’re not, your heating system will consume more energy than it should, leading to higher bills.
Better insulation throughout the house, especially the attic, will allow your HVAC to work less while maintaining your home’s temperature. This will keep the heat in during the winter. Additionally, you’ll save on your HVAC bills.
Preventive HVAC Maintenance from Lee Company
Lee Company’s HVAC pros can check your HVAC system and provide the best solutions for your home. Join our Home Maintenance Plan and receive annual HVAC inspections of your heating, air conditioning, plumbing, and electrical systems for less than $9 per month. Plan members also receive discounts on service calls, parts and labor, new installations and renovations, and priority service with no emergency service rates.
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