5 Ways to Prepare Your HVAC System for Winter

As winter draws near, make sure your HVAC system is equipped for optimal performance. By following these 5 winter preparation tips, you can avoid breakdowns and costly repairs.

5 Ways to Prepare Your HVAC System for Winter

Change the filter

Your air conditioner has been running all summer. Now that you’re transitioning to winter time, see if the filter needs to be changed. The dirt that gets sucks into the HVAC system is often the number one thing to cause HVAC systems to break down. A dirty filter also makes your system a lot more inefficient.

Make sure you check your air filter every 30 days and wait no longer than 90 days to replace it. Keep plenty of backup air filters on hand so you don’t have the excuse of not having a replacement available.

Learn more about why filters are so important and how to select the right filter replacement

Turn your furnace on at least three times while it’s still mild outside

Make sure you turn your furnace on at least three times while it is still mild out. You don’t want to turn your furnace on the first really cold day only to find out that the furnace isn’t working anymore.

A lot of times, furnaces will have things going on inside such as squirrels and critters getting stuck in flue and ventilation systems. There are a lot of problems that can develop with your heating system during the off-season.

You want to find out if your furnace works early in the season while it’s still mild out.

Conduct a visual inspection around the furnace

No matter where your furnace is located — in the attic, garage, or closet — it’s a good idea to conduct a visual inspection before, and periodically during, the heating season.

If your furnace is in the attic and hard to access, contact a professional.

Remove anything that is around the furnace. There should be a minimum 3-foot clearance around the entire unit. We don’t want anything draped over the furnace or laying around it.

Also, these furnaces need to breathe. If there is a lot of stuff around the furnace, it reduces airflow and causes them to break down and not operate properly.

Learn more winter heating safety tips to prevent gas leaks, carbon monoxide, water leaks, electrical shocks, and fires.

Make sure you have a programmable thermostat and program it properly

With the change in seasons, it’s a good idea to revisit your thermostat. You can program your thermostat to come on in the morning about 30 minutes before you wake up so everything is nice and warm by the time you roll out of bed.

You can also program it to shut off when you leave in the morning and then come back on 30 minutes before you arrive, and then shut off at night if you like it cool in the evening.

There’s a lot of different features available in smart and programmable thermostats. Consult your owner’s manual or call a service provider who can help you get that set up.

Here’s a suggested weekly thermostat schedule for winter.

Make sure you have regular maintenance at least once per year

A furnace emits carbon monoxide and also has natural gas that’s used to produce heat. These are two volatile elements we don’t recommend homeowners mess around with.

Your furnace has a flame inside. You want to have it inspected every year by a service provider to make sure it’s burning safely and efficiently. Your HVAC technician will also clean the entire system, improving indoor air quality and extending the lifespan of the system.

Learn what is involved in a professional furnace tune-up. Sign up for an HVAC maintenance agreement such as our Maintenance Value Plan (MVP) for bi-annual HVAC tune-ups and MVP treatment.

Service Champions is known for trustworthy, on-time home service throughout the East Bay, South Bay, and Sacramento areas. Experience the Diamond Certified difference.

Contact Service Champions today for your fall furnace tune-up.

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