When you imagine winter, you hopefully imagine a comfortable evening in your warm home. But every now and then winter doesn't want to go along with our plans, and we're left shivering in our own homes. You won't always be able to stop a blizzard from rolling through, but you can prevent your HVAC system from being poorly equipped for winter. Nobody wants or deserves an unreliable furnace, which is why we made this checklist for getting your HVAC system ready for winter.
Five Ways to Prepare Your HVAC for a Cold Winter
1. Wrap up Your Outdoor Unit and Clean the Space Around It
Since most HVAC systems have an outdoor condenser unit to dispel heat, you'll want to ensure that the area surrounding it is clean of any yard debris. Clear 5 feet of space or so from any vegetation or rocks. It's also a good idea to ensure it's protected by a bit of tarp or similar material over the winter. This keeps ice and other problems from getting inside the condenser.
2. Rinse or Replace the Air Filter
Always evaluate and clean out your air filter, usually located in your furnace's indoor air handler. Dust, pollen, animal dander and many other kinds of debris can steadily build up in the air filter. If it goes unchecked, your HVAC system could lose efficiency and possibly even become a fire hazard. A clear air filter enables air to flow easily, sustaining sufficient ventilation and helping keep indoor air quality higher. To secure the most benefit from an air filter, make sure to clean or replace it every few months or based on manufacturer instructions.
3. Clean the Blower
The blower is crucial to your Lennox furnace, and as a key component it can accumulate a lot of wear and tear. Cleaning it once in a while will help it continue working at its best. Vacuum the area near the blower and brush the blades with a microfiber cloth for more efficient airflow. If you notice any odd noises or aren't getting any circulation from the vents, call a professional technician to check your blower.
4. Search for Gaps or Dents in Your Furnace
Make sure that your furnace doesn't have visible damage on the inside or outside units. A hole in the air handler or a large dent in the condenser unit outside may play a role in all sorts of comfort problems, such as heat escaping before it reaches your ductwork. If there is obvious damage, consult your local technician at Wolfe & Sons Heating and Cooling about examining the system before the temperatures begin to drop. This way you can avoid letting a minor flaw in the system turn into a major problem.
5. Test Your Equipment Before It Gets Too Cold
It's always smart to make sure your furnace is working properly before its busiest season. If not, your heating might be unequipped for the first true drop in temperatures. Performing a test run of your furnace can give you the opportunity to notice potential problems right away, while they're still simpler to fix. This also eliminates any dust that might have gathered in the air ducts during the fall, eliminating that burnt smell. As soon as your furnace is in working condition, you can sled away from any HVAC worries.
A Well-Maintained Furnace Is a Great Way to Welcome Winter
Winter weather is going to be heading this way before you know it. If you take the time to get your furnace prepped beforehand, you can spend the winter enjoying the holidays, drinking hot cocoa or hanging out with your family inside a warm, cozy home. Be sure to follow the tips above to get your home ready for next winter!