Not everyone knows a lot about HVAC service and contractors. If so, when a problem occurs it can be frustrating. Luckily for those homeowners, there are plenty of reputable HVAC specialists in the local area who are willing to help.
What do you need done? Know this before calling a contractor. A contractor will be hard pressed to provide you with an over-the-phone estimate if unfamiliar with your system. It can be harder if you don't know what's wrong. This is information that you should have prepared in advance.
Make sure that you regularly clean debris that might build up on external condenser units. After a wind or rain storm things may pile up, causing problems with your HVAC system. If you do not, the unit may get too hot and cause additional problems.
Every spring you should clean the coils and fan blades on your condenser fan. Start by turning off the power to avoid having anything move when you work on it. Pull out each of the blades and clean them one by one.
When the leaves start to fall, the HVAC equipment can be harmed. When you notice your trees shedding, frequently clean your unit's fan grill. The fan must be unobstructed to work properly, and if it becomes blocked, it could cause your system to break down.
If the fan on your condenser includes oil ports, they must be lubricated annually. These ports have a metal covering. Sometimes it is rubber. Buy an SAE 20 product that is lightweight, and then put no more than ten drops into the ports.
When it gets cold outside, it is necessary to turn off outdoor condenser units. If the temperature drops to under 60 degrees, you risk damage to the unit if you leave it on. This can keep your system working for years and save you a lot on repairs.
If nobody is home, turn off the air conditioner to save money. The house will heat up when it is turned off, but only a certain amount. The longer the unit stays on, the more it ends up costing you in energy bills.
Some air conditioners can ice up. Drain lines can also suffer an occasional freeze, and these are sometimes mistaken for plumbing leak issues. If this is something you notice, switch the thermostat in your home to fan only so the compressor is disabled. If the issue persists, call in help.
There are plenty of online tools, such as sizing calculators, which can help you find the best unit to cool your home. If you buy something too large it won't be efficient as it cools the same. To get the right information, look in the manual to find out the rating the manufacturer gives the unit for cooling.
Ask friends and family for contractor recommendations. Anyone that has previously needed work done on their HVAC unit are more than happy to tell you their experiences. This will also help you avoid scammers.
When the heating or air conditioning breaks, a homeowner immediately becomes disgruntled. The smartest homeowners will study their HVAC system prior to a problem ever occurring. Keep these tips handy so that you can refer to them as needed.
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Filed under: HVAC
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