Your HVAC system is the pulse of your home. It impacts your comfort level, health and wellness, and even your budget. That’s why it’s so important to take care of this system and get the best possible return on investment.
The average air conditioning systems and furnaces can last for more than 15 years, but only if they’re well maintained. Here are some practical tips to help extend the lifespan of your HVAC.
Schedule Annual Maintenance
Scheduling annual maintenance is the best way to extend the lifespan of your HVAC, especially if you live in an extreme climate. For example, experts at Milestone Cooling services Fort Worth, TX, deal with temperatures exceeding triple digits in the summer months. This reliable service reiterates the importance of scheduling a tune-up during the early spring to ensure everything runs smoothly when the first hot day hits. Similarly, those living in colder climates with extreme winters in Minnesota and Michigan should prioritize annual furnace tune-ups.
Plan for two tune-up visits per year: one in the spring for your AC and one in the fall for your furnace. During these visits, the specialist will tighten loose connections, lubricate moving parts, clean debris from fans and blowers, and ultimately protect the integrity of your home.
Clean or Change Filters
While filter changes are a regular part of an annual tune-up, you should also change or clean them between visits. Depending on your HVAC system, you may have replaceable or cleanable filters. If you’re unsure which, refer to your operator manual or ask your HVAC service provider.
To get the best possible lifespan from your HVAC system, plan to clean your filters once per month. This easy chore also helps improve your indoor air quality.
Adjust by a Few Degrees
Adjusting your thermostat by a few degrees can significantly impact your HVAC’s wear and tear, as well as your energy consumption. The logic is simple: your heating and cooling systems must work harder to hit a higher or lower temperature, respectively.
If your ideal temperature is 70 degrees during the winter, consider setting your thermostat at 68 instead and grabbing a sweater. Similarly, set the air conditioner at two degrees warmer during summer and get a cold drink. Your body will barely notice the difference, but your systems will.
Seal or Block Windows
Windows are the worst offender for heat and cool air loss. It’s estimated that windows are responsible for 25-30% of residential energy use, either by heat loss or heat gain. In other words, you’re spending hundreds of dollars every year on nothing.
It’s also important to consider how much harder your system will have to work in certain areas of your home. If your living room has a large picture window with the sun beating in on your air conditioner, it will work extra hard to make up for the difference.
The simple solution is to seal or block your windows. An affordable set of thermal curtains closed against the summer and winter nights can profoundly impact your HVAC’s efficiency. You can also get thermal window film to minimize the effects when the curtains are open.
Insulate Your Attic
Your HVAC system is only as good as your insulation, particularly in your attic. Attic insulation in a properly sealed home can last for decades, but you might notice it starting to settle after ten years.
The easiest way to determine if your attic needs insulation is to take a quick look. If you can see the floor joists from the attic entrance, it’s time for another layer.
Improve Your Airflow
Finally, look at other ways to improve your airflow. Close off rooms that aren’t in use and avoid blocking vents with furniture and other barriers. Use fans to direct the airflow in your home, changing the direction of ceiling fans seasonally.
These simple tasks could extend the lifespan of your HVAC systems by another ten years, protecting your investment and your health.