Summer is here and there are lots of reasons to be excited: the end of the school year, vacations, Fourth of July fireworks, longer days, spending all day at the pool, popsicles, picking strawberries at Batey Farms, barbecues … the list could go on forever.
But if your HVAC unit is not properly prepared to beat the heat, the summer could be as hot inside your house as it is outside. And unless you’ve got a slide in your living room, that’s not going to be any fun.
Here are three quick tips for getting your HVAC unit as ready for summer as you are:
Clean, clean, clean
Spring cleaning shouldn’t stop at your windows and floors. Before it gets too hot, take some time to clean your air filter. If you have a permanent filter, cleaning it will allow more cold air through. If you have a replaceable filter, go ahead and replace it at the beginning of summer. During the spring and fall, your system is working intermittently. But during the summer, it’s possible it could be on all day. Replacing the filter will give you better air circulation and help prevent mold and bacteria.
You’ll also want to go outside and check your unit to make sure it has plenty of room to do its job. Clean up space around it by making sure shrubs or other plants haven’t started to grow up around it. Generally speaking, you don’t want anything within a couple of feet of your unit.
We recommend you have a professional regularly clean the air ducts in your system. When the ducts are clean, the system will last longer and the air you breathe in will be freer from dust and allergens. This service will also likely pay for itself over time because of the extension in the life of your system and the reduction in energy costs.
Become a fan of fans
One way to keep your HVAC unit from working overtime is to use fans. You can get fairly powerful oscillating fans or box fans for less than $100 each and place them in the rooms where you spend most of your time. You should also consider installing ceiling fans in bedrooms and maybe even living rooms, dens or playrooms.
Then you can set your thermostat to a higher temperature and still stay cool.
Get with the program
Speaking of thermostats, invest in a programmable thermostat.
You can set the temperature for precisely what you need throughout the day or night – even when you’re not at home. And when you get home, you won’t be walking into a hot house. This approach will also save you money and prevent your unit from overworking to cool off the house.