When you think about winter, ideally you think of a comfy evening in your warm home. But sometimes winter doesn't want to go along with our plans, and we're stuck shivering in our own homes. You may not be able to stop a blizzard from showing up, but you can prevent your heating from being unprepared for winter. Nobody prefers or deserves a faulty furnace, which is why we created this checklist for getting your HVAC system prepped for winter.
Five Ways to Prepare Your HVAC for Winter
1. Wrap up Your Outdoor Unit and Clear the Space Around It
Since most HVAC systems have an outdoor condenser unit to dispel heat, you'll want to make sure that the area surrounding it is clear of any yard debris. Clear 5 feet of space or so from any vegetation or sticks. It's also recommended to ensure it's protected by a section of tarp or similar material over the winter. This keeps ice and other debris from getting inside the condenser.
2. Clean or Replace the Air Filter
Always check and clean out your air filter, usually placed in your furnace's indoor air handler. Dust, pollen, animal dander and many other contaminants can steadily accumulate in the air filter. If it goes unchecked, your heating could lose efficiency and maybe even become a fire hazard. A clear air filter allows air to flow smoothly, sustaining sufficient ventilation and helping keep indoor air quality high. To get the most benefit from an air filter, make sure to clean or exchange it every few months or in line with manufacturer instructions.
3. Clean the Blower
The blower is essential to your Lennox furnace, and as an integral component it can attract a lot of wear and tear. Cleaning it on occasion will help it continue working at its best. Vacuum the area around the blower and clean the blades with a microfiber cloth for optimal airflow. If you hear any strange noises or can't get any circulation from the vents, call a professional technician to examine your blower.
4. Check for Gaps or Dents in Your Furnace
Make sure that your furnace doesn't have visible damage on the inside or outside units. A hole in the air handler or flaws in the condenser unit outside can play a role in all kinds of comfort problems, such as heat leaking out before it moves into your ductwork. If there is obvious damage, talk to your local technician at Wallpe Heating & Cooling about examining the system before the temperatures start falling. This way you can avoid letting a slight flaw in the system grow into a major problem.
5. Test Your Heating Before It Gets Too Cold
It's always smart to make sure your HVAC system is functioning properly before the middle of winter. If you don't, your furnace might be unequipped for the first real drop in temperatures. Performing a test run of your furnace can provide the chance to notice potential problems then and there, while they're still easier to correct. This also burns off any dust that may have accumulated in the air ducts during the fall, eliminating that burnt smell. Once your furnace is in working shape, you can sled away from any HVAC worries.
A Well-Maintained Furnace Is a Great Way to Welcome Winter
Winter weather is going to be on the way before you know it. If you take the time to get your furnace prepped ahead of time, you can spend the all winter enjoying the holidays, drinking hot cocoa or relaxing with your family inside a warm, cozy home. Don't forget to follow the tips above to get your home prepared for next winter!