When you think of winter, ideally you think of a comfortable evening curled up by the fire. But sometimes winter doesn't feel like going along with our plans, and we're left shivering in our own homes. You might not be able to keep a blizzard from rolling through, but you can prevent your furnace and other HVAC equipment from being poorly equipped for winter. Nobody likes or deserves an unreliable furnace, which is why we created this checklist for getting your HVAC system prepared for winter.
Five Ways to Prepare Your HVAC for a Winter Blast
1. Cover Your Outdoor Unit and Clean the Space Around It
Since most HVAC systems have an outdoor condenser unit to discharge heat, you'll want to ensure that the area nearby is clear of any yard debris. Clean 5 feet of space or so from any plants or sticks. It's also a good idea to make sure it's covered up by a piece of tarp or similar material through the winter. This keeps ice and other problems from getting inside the condenser.
2. Clean or Replace the Air Filter
Always evaluate and clean out your air filter, customarily located in your furnace's indoor air handler. Dust, pollen, animal dander and many other materials can slowly build up in the air filter. If it goes unchecked, your HVAC system can lose efficiency and possibly even become a fire hazard. A clear air filter enables air to flow more freely, sustaining adequate ventilation and helping keep indoor air quality healthy. To enjoy the most benefit from your filter, make sure to clean or exchange it every few months or based on manufacturer instructions.
3. Clean the Blower
The blower is crucial to your Lennox furnace, and as a key component it can accumulate a lot of wear and tear. Cleaning it on occasion will help maintain strong performance. Vacuum the area next to the blower and clean the blades with a microfiber cloth for optimal airflow. If you notice any strange noises or are not getting any circulation from the vents, hire a professional technician to check out your blower.
4. Look 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 damage to the condenser unit outside may worsen all sorts of comfort problems, including heat leaking out before it moves into your ductwork. If there is noticeable damage, speak with your local technician at Ilten's Incorporated about inspecting the system before the temperatures begin to drop. This way you can avoid letting a minor crack 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 working properly before the middle of winter. If you don't, your heating may be unprepared for the first real drop in temperatures. Conducting a test run of your furnace can offer you the opportunity to recognize potential problems then and there, while they're still simpler to fix. This also removes any dust that might have gathered in the air ducts beforehand, getting rid of that burnt smell. When your furnace is in working order, you can sled away from these HVAC worries.
A Well-Prepared Furnace Is a Great Way to Welcome Winter
Winter weather will be on its way before you know it. If you spend some time to get your furnace prepped in advance, you can spend the all winter enjoying the holidays, sipping hot cocoa or relaxing with your family inside a warm, cozy home. Remember to follow the tips above to get your home ready for next winter!