Is your HVAC system ready for winter? Getting a routine inspection and maintenance check in the autumn is just part of the process. You can use strategies throughout winter to minimize energy consumption and keep your utility bill in check.
For starters, take a look at where your heating vents are. Make sure they’re clean and clear. Unfortunately, heating vents often can be in inopportune places easy to cover with furniture or curtains, but don’t. This is hazardous and makes your HVAC work overtime trying to heat a room.
Your ducts and vents can collect lots of dust and debris. Luckily, replacing your filter is one HVAC maintenance task you can do yourself. Ask your HVAC technician during your autumn inspection how to swap out filters and clean vents. Your local pro also can show you which filters, ducts and vents need to be cleaned or replaced on a regular basis. Winter months can be especially brutal, since families stay indoors more, leading to more dust buildup than in summer months.
Getting a smart home device like the Nest thermostat is a great way to keep your heat consumption in check. These devices learn your habits, so energy consumption is monitored. You can program them so your home is already at the perfect temperature when you arrive, which can help discourage you from cranking the heat because you’re chilled from running errands. Agree with your family on a “winter temperature” that keeps everyone comfortable.
Making sure your home is properly insulated can work wonders in helping your HVAC perform at its best. You don’t necessarily need to replace all your windows, but adding an insulating film (or simply keeping the curtains/blinds drawn) can help trap the heat. Close off rooms that aren’t being used, perhaps with a towel at the bottom of the door if there’s a gap, since there’s no point in heating empty rooms.
Doing Your Part
Unfortunately, your home’s previous owners or builders may have chosen an HVAC system that’s the wrong size for the house. Too small a system and it’s nearly impossible to adequately provide heat; too big and you’re at risk of energy over-consumption. Depending on the age of the system, it might not be financially savvy to replace it, which means you’ll have to get a little more creative. For starters, cook and bake more often in winter months. Not only will the added heat keep you toasty, but heating yourself up from the inside out with warm cookies or hot soups can help keep you cozy.
Is your HVAC system up for the winter challenge? Call Roberts Mechanical to schedule your HVAC maintenance inspection or repair, or for advice on upgrading your furnace or boiler.