Fall is such a beautiful time of the year here in the Pacific Northwest. The days are warm, the nights are mild; its almost easy to forget cold, wet days are soon ahead.
Yet as we transition from one season to another, its important to remember that in order to maintain your HVAC system and keep it in good, working condition, its important to properly shut down your air conditioner and ready your heating unit for the coming months ahead. That means cleaning, inspecting, and ensuring its properly protected for the coming months ahead. By skipping these important steps, you could be putting your equipment at risk for failure, and be facing major HVAC repair headaches ahead (not to mention the major expense of having to replace equipment sooner than you planned).
Your Fall Maintenance HVAC Checklist
1.Check condition of filters and replace
Your filters help maintain indoor air quality, so its important to have clean filters. After a long, hot season, all of that wear leads to dirty air filters. By leaving dirty filters in your units, it allows dirt, debris and contaminants into your system where they can reduce the effectiveness of your equipment. Replacing them at the end of the season reduces this possibility.
2. Tighten any loose connections
By checking all connections now, you ensure proper working equipment throughout the season. It also ensures that your equipment is ready in the coming season when its time to transition from one unit to the next.
3. Check safety and operating controls
By performing regular maintenance, each unit will be inspected thoroughly to determine its in good mechanical operation, and that all safety checks are in place.
4. Check lines and coils
Lines and coils keep your HVAC unit operating throughout the season. However, if a small clog or leak is present, it can fester as it sits idle during the off season, and can quickly escalate into a major problem when turned on once again. Find and repair or replace all lines and coils now so they will be ready to go when the weather changes again.
5. Check tension and condition of belts
Belts allow your HVAC equipment to run properly. If one becomes loose, is damaged or breaks, it can seriously damage your motor, possibly beyond repair. Check tension and replace worn belts to avoid potential damage.
6. Lubricate shaft and motor bearings
Proper lubrication means your blower motor will continue to work on demand, and it will allow equipment to operate freely.
7. Clean ducts and airways
Over the years, ducts and airways can have a buildup of dirt and debris. As this dirt accumulates and moisture builds, it can quickly turn to mildew and mold, allowing your building to not be as healthy as it could.
8. Check blowers and blades
Cleaning blades regularly means your blower motor will have proper air flow and it will continue to do the job it was designed to do. It ensures maximum efficiency and lowers your energy costs.
9. Check the overall condition of equipment
Complete inspections can help find tiny problems that can quickly escalate. Its important to fix even the tiniest of problems while they are small, so they don’t have the chance to escalate and turn into major problems that could be more costly down the road.
10. Protect outdoor units from the elements
Sun, wind, rain, snow; all can take its toll on HVAC equipment. If you have an outdoor or rooftop unit, its important to cover and protect them when not in use. Covering is important; wrapping it so its air tight isn’t. Make sure your unit has some breathing room to allow moisture to escape and not accumulate on your equipment.
Some property managers or building owners attempt to save money by using their own maintenance staff to do the little jobs associated with HVAC. It is easy to replace filters and buy a cover for your outdoor unit. But to truly understand the inner-workings of HVAC equipment and to protect your investment from the harsh elements it faces every day, a reputable HVAC contractor is the better choice. A certified HVAC technician understands how to properly clean and maintain HVAC equipment, and also knows how to spot the little problems and correct them before they elevate into something more. If you’re considering a preventative maintenance service agreement from a reputable HVAC company, we would be happy to talk with you about how it can save you money over time. Give us a call today.
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