When you imagine winter, you hopefully think of a cozy evening curled up by the fire. But every now and then winter doesn't feel like going along with our plans, and we end up shivering in our own homes. You won't always be able to prevent a blizzard from showing up, but you can prevent your HVAC system from being unprepared for winter. Nobody likes or deserves an unreliable furnace, which is why we prepared this checklist for getting your HVAC system ready for winter.
Five Ways to Prepare Your HVAC for a Winter Blast
1. Cover up Your Outdoor Unit and Clean the Space Near It
Since most HVAC systems have an outdoor condenser unit to dispel heat, you'll want to ensure that the area surrounding it is free of any yard debris. Clear 5 feet of space or so from any vegetation or objects. It's also recommended to make sure it's covered up by a piece of tarp or similar material through the winter. This keeps ice and other debris from getting inside the condenser.
2. Wash or Replace the Air Filter
Always check and clean out your air filter, normally placed in your furnace's indoor air handler. Dust, pollen, animal dander and many other kinds of debris can steadily collect in the air filter. If it goes unchecked, your heating might lose efficiency and potentially even become a fire hazard. A fresh air filter allows air to flow easily, maintaining adequate ventilation and helping keep indoor air quality high. To enjoy the most benefit from an air filter, make sure to clean or change it every two or three months or in line with manufacturer instructions.
3. Clean the Blower
The blower is vital to your Lennox furnace, and as an integral component it can collect 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 optimum airflow. If you hear any unusual noises or can't get any circulation from the vents, hire a professional technician to check your blower.
4. Check for Gaps or Dents in Your Furnace
Make sure that your furnace has no visible damage on the inside or outside units. A hole in the air handler or a large dent in the condenser unit outside could contribute to all sorts of comfort problems, such as heat escaping before it makes it to your ductwork. If there is noticeable damage, speak with your local technician at Comfort Zone, LLC about inspecting the system before the temperatures start falling. This way you can avoid letting a slight gap in the system grow into a major problem.
5. Test Your Equipment Before It Gets Too Cold
It's always wise to make sure your furnace is running properly before its busiest season. If not, your HVAC system may be unprepared for the first real drop in temperatures. Doing a test run of your heating can give you the chance to discover potential problems early, while they're still easier to solve. This also burns away any dust that may have gathered in the air ducts over the fall, getting rid of that burnt smell. Once your furnace is in working order, you can sled away from your HVAC worries.
A Well-Prepared Furnace Is a Great Way to Welcome Winter
Winter weather should be heading this way before you know it. If you take the time to get your furnace prepared in advance, you can spend the rest of the season enjoying the holidays, sipping hot cocoa or relaxing with your family inside a warm, cozy home. Be sure to follow the tips above to get your home prepped for next winter!