If you live in a temperate climate, having to deal with an HVAC emergency when it’s below freezing outside is not fun. Even if you’ve followed all of our previous HVAC maintenance tips leading into autumn, missing something can not only reduce the efficiency of your system, but could also lead to increased humidity levels, which can facilitate the growth of mildew and mold.
Before letting your investment take a backseat to overtaxing your HVAC system in order to stay warm, consider these different ways of keeping your indoor environment both comfortable and healthy.
Consider Replacing an Aging HVAC System
Before winter settles in fully, it may be time to consider your existing HVAC system and whether or not it’s as efficient as it can be. Roughly half of energy consumption in the average home is from heating and cooling, and an inefficient system will not only leave you in the cold, but also cost you much more in the long run.
Investing in a more efficient HVAC system will begin paying for itself almost immediately, and will not have to work as hard to maintain the desired indoor climate.
Winterproof Your Home
Yes, winterproofing isn’t just for travelers and snowbirds. There are steps you can take to ensure that heat is retained within the home, such as:
- Checking your doors and windows for leaks.
- Invest in some heavy curtains to help prevent heat from escaping.
- Ensure that your vents and ducts are clean to maximize efficiency.
- Check that your thermostat is functioning properly.
Be sure to keep combustible materials away from heating elements and maintain a proper maintenance schedule for your HVAC system.
Check Your Attic for Proper Insulation and Ventilation
As part of your home check, be sure to take a look in your attic to ensure that it is properly insulated and ventilated. As the indoor environment is warmed, hot air rises and can get trapped in the attic, where it can cause a plethora of problems such as ice dams, cracked shingles, and frame damage.
If you are ever unsure about how much ventilation your attic will need, be sure to use our attic ventilation calculator to find out how much you require by square footage.
Watch Your Energy Bill
It’s always a good idea to keep an eye on your energy bill as the winter months drag on. A leaky window or drafty door can become a costly venture not only in the short-term, but also in the long-term as your HVAC system works overtime to make up for it.
Part of your HVAC maintenance plan should include locating and diagnosing various problems that can occur, and a high energy bill is a big indicator of either a faulty/dirty system, poor insulation, or inefficient ventilation.
Keeping your air filters and vents clean is the easiest way to reduce your energy costs and extend the lifespan of your HVAC system.