As the upcoming winter and holiday season moves in, so does our increased use of heaters on those cold days outside. During this time, it’s tempting to drastically run up the temperature so you can get warm quickly, but there are some preliminary actions you need to take so you are able to take the proper steps in your winter heating prep for your home.
It can be easy to ignore and neglect our heating system in the warmer months, especially given that it’s often placed in a hidden location. However, we have grouped together some proactive maintenance steps you can take before and throughout the winter to ensure limited heating unit problems when the temperature drops outside.
Taking these steps outlined below will prepare safe living spaces for you, your family, and/or business all winter long. HVAC equipment can be intimidating at times, but fear not as we have a HVAC professional standing by at all times to take care of your system.
That being said, here are the top 6 tips you need to know in order to prepare your heating unit for the winter months!
1. Get your Heating Equipment Professionally Serviced
This may seem like an obvious suggestion, but it’s surprising how often people neglect to service their heating system until the winter season.
Every machine-like item needs to be checked regularly, heating and furnace equipment are no exceptions. As a rule of thumb, keep this in mind. If your heating system is:
- Less than 10 years old, service & repair every other year.
- Older than 10 years, service & repair each year.
Paying upfront at each service for a professional checkup will save money on your energy bills in the long run. After all, no one wants to spend all that dough on a whole new system or a high heating bill in the middle of winter when you can easily maintain and winter prep your heating system throughout the entire year.
Give us a call today to set up your next appointment!
2. Change your HVAC Air Filters Every 90 Days
As with any type of machinery, parts always requires replacement to maintain proper energy efficiency. For an HVAC unit, it regularly needs air filters. Over time, heating units accumulate considerable amounts of airborne particles such as dust, dirt, and other debris that can cause internal damage to important components if left unattended. This filter helps by removing these things in the air while also heating your home or office.
Replacing your air filters is a super easy way to maintain a heating system in the colder months. A general rule is to replace your HVAC Air Filters every 90 days (every 3 months). We even suggest placing an alarm on your phone to help you remember! Check out our Knowledge Center to learn more about filter replacements and more HVAC system tips.
With winters being a high point for heating systems, they’ll need extra attention and an increased frequency of filter replacement.
3. Strategically Set Your Thermostat
One of the easiest ways to avoid overworking your unit is through strategically setting the thermostat to desired temperature. If you know that you are going to be away from the house all day, don’t be afraid to lower the temperature to alleviate some pressure off the heating system.
Once you’re home again, you can reset the thermostat to a more comfortable temperature. Another way to alleviate stress on your system is through the use of a programmable thermostat – which also prevents heat loss.
If you are at the office, be sure to program your thermostat to a lower temperature at the end of the day. Just before everyone arrives at the office, you can set the temperature to heat your space and keep everyone comfortable.
This is similar to turning off lights when you aren’t at home. This type of proper care is a huge money saver and will keep your home efficient.
4. Inspect the Ducts
Duct systems are one of the most crucial aspects of a properly functioning heating system. Any air leaks in the system can prevent peak energy efficiency and cause many issues.
Be sure to listen for any odd noises coming from the ductwork system in every room, as you might be hearing signs of possible duct issues. If you’re unsure of how to perform a proper maintenance inspection on your own, you can always contact us to schedule an appointment or include this inspection with your heater service appointment.
To learn more about inspecting ductwork, check out our Air Duct Cleaning Services.
5. Test the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
Although this isn’t an official part of your heating unit, having carbon monoxide and smoke detectors will help keep you safe while your heater is constantly running through the winter.
To ensure this is safely working, simply press the “test” button and confirming its effectiveness. We recommend checking your carbon monoxide detector once a month and replace the batteries every 6 months. If you happen to encounter any issues, give us a call for further assistance.
As a reminder, this can be extremely toxic for you and your family, so it’s important that you do not skip this step as you begin your winter heating prep.
6. Consider Installing Better Installation
When it comes to heating your house, if you aren’t properly insulated then you’re fighting a lost cause this winter. Allowing the warm air to escape through windows, walls, and doors will cause your HVAC unit to overwork itself.
Just like the popular insulated cups, your house needs to have efficient insulation levels to help regulate a comfortable temperature. Allowing more heat to stay in not only allows an HVAC system more downtime, but keeps other aspects of your home protected during the winter.
Be sure to prep your home with proper insulation in walls, insulated windows, and updated door seals.
Now Your heating system is ready for the Winter
After checking off all these items from your winter heating prep list, you will be prepared to take on the winter months – or at least your heater system! With these 5 tips and some consistent attention, your unit is less likely to negatively impact your winter and give you less problems. Most importantly, your heating bills will go down!
The proper maintenance throughout the entire year will not only keep your entire HVAC system efficient for the winter months, but also during spring, summer, and fall.
A good HVAC unit is meant to last 15 – 25 years, so be proactive in taking these steps to avoid a costly repair. All you’ll have to do is sit back, relax, and enjoy your heated home from the end of fall to the beginning of spring! You won’t regret taking care of that heating system after all! As always, contact us here or give us a call if you come across any problems and be sure to schedule your winter service now! Enjoy your warm air this cold winter season!