Congratulations on picking out your first home! You are undoubtedly delighted with your investment, even though you may feel overwhelmed by all your new responsibilities. Now that you’re the owner, not the renter, it’s your job to care for all your home’s appliances and utilities, such as the heating and cooling equipment.
If the only interaction you’ve ever experienced with a furnace or air conditioner is to change the thermostat, you have more to learn. Get a head start with these HVAC system tips for new homeowners.
Know the Different Elements of an HVAC System
HVAC stands for heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Unless you live in a perpetually comfortable climate, your new home likely has this system to keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Here are the basic parts of an HVAC system:
- Comfort units, like an air conditioner, air-source heat pump, furnace, boiler, geothermal heat pump or ductless mini-split, to name a few choices.
- Ductwork attached to return and supply registers when it comes to air-forced systems like ACs, heat pumps and furnaces.
- Radiators or hot water distribution systems like boilers.
- Indoor air quality solutions, like an air filter, whole-house humidifier, whole-house dehumidifier, air purifier or energy-recovery ventilator.
- Thermostat for indoor comfort control.
Appreciate the Importance of Preventive Maintenance
When you rented, a landlord likely managed any HVAC maintenance tasks such as replacing the air filter. They may or may not have also handled the bill for thorough heating and cooling inspections.
Now that you’re taking care of things, you can give preventive maintenance the attention it deserves. First, complete these do-it-yourself HVAC maintenance tasks:
- Replace the air filter every 30 to 90 days.
- Lightly hose down the outdoor unit and pare back vegetation to increase airflow.
- Keep all air registers open to preserve proper system balance.
Then, arrange yearly maintenance for each HVAC unit. Only a qualified professional can complete in-depth tasks like cleaning the furnace burners, recharging the AC refrigerant and gauging air leaks in the ductwork. Count on the following advantages when you call a professional to inspect your system once a year:
- Energy savings
- Fewer breakdowns
- Smaller repair bills
- Superior home comfort
- Expanded system life span
- Peace of mind
Keep an Eye Out for Signs of Trouble
Repairing and replacing the HVAC system is the homeowner’s job. Watch for these clues that it’s time to call a heating and cooling professional:
- Excessive noise: Don’t ignore a whining, rattling, clanking or banging sound. It could be a cry for help from your home's furnace or air conditioner.
- Comfort or air quality problems: Inconsistent temperatures, high or low humidity, stuffy rooms and mold-like smells are regularly associated with malfunctioning HVAC equipment.
- Low energy efficiency: Are your bills mysteriously on the rise? This could mean your heating and cooling system isn’t running properly.
- Old age: Like all mechanical equipment, HVAC systems inevitably give out. The standard life span of a furnace or boiler is 15 years, while air conditioners and heat pumps run just about a decade.
Learn More About the HVAC Replacement Process
If a defective furnace or air conditioner can’t be repaired, you’ll need to replace it with an HVAC professional's help. Here’s how it works:
- Illustrate the problem to your technician and permit them to investigate it more in-depth.
- The technician should diagnose the problem and offer possible solutions. A repair might be viable, but depending on the unit’s condition and age, a replacement may be more cost-effective.
- You can obtain various opinions and estimates from assorted contractors if you so choose.
- When you work with Climate Control Service Experts, a residential sales consultant will determine what HVAC system, brand, fuel type and efficiency rating is best for you.
- The contractor will then compose a written estimate describing the work required, the equipment they’ll install and the total price. You should also receive info about warranty coverage, service plans and financing options.
- Schedule the installation as soon as you decide what system you want. The technician will complete everything, even hauling away the old equipment for safe disposal.
- The sales consultant will go over the new system with you, explaining how to use it, answering any questions and giving you all the necessary documentation.
Call Climate Control Service Experts
If you have concerns about these HVAC system fundamentals, don’t hesitate to reach out to Climate Control Service Experts. We focus on customer education to help you make an educated decision about your HVAC system. Our team is proficient in a full range of HVAC services, so reach out for anything from furnace maintenance to AC repair to heat pump installation. For more details or to ask about an estimate, please call your local Climate Control Service Experts office today.