As you know, the holidays are right around the corner and we are all looking forward to seeing our closest loved ones safely. With all the extra precautions on our minds the last thing we want to think about is our HVAC systems and what could go wrong. So I am going to save you peace of mind with a quick check list.
When it comes to your HVAC system, your to-don’t list is just as important as your to do list. Preventing stress related to your HVAC system requires avoiding these common mistakes and poor habits.
Here are the top six activities to put on your HVAC to-don’t list this winter.
Crank up the heat
Of course you have to turn up the temperature to keep your home liveable during the coldest time of year. But to keep your energy bills down and lengthen the operating life of your furnace, resist the urge to turn your home into a toasty haven. Keep it comfortable but leave the shorts packed away for the season.
Ignore your humidifier
Winter is typically associated with low humidity and adding a humidifier is the best way to deal with this. But a humidifier is not a set-it-and-forget-it piece of equipment. You can end up with moisture problems when you least expect it. Monitor areas like your basement for too much moisture and make adjustments if necessary.
Leave old insulation on ductwork
If you have ductwork passing through unheated spaces, it might already be insulated (if not, another “to-don’t” would be to ignore this situation – add insulating it to your to do list!). You may not think much of it but insulation degrades over time, causing heat to be transferred from your ductwork into this unheated space, wasting energy and costing you more.
Run an untuned furnace
After everything that has happened throughout the year, tuning your furnace might be lower on your to do list. But running your furnace for another year without inspection and tuning can cause more problems, making this a critical to-don’t for winter.
Run your furnace with dirty ductwork
Every time your furnace comes on, it circulates the dust and other particles accumulated in the ductwork. With extra time indoors from the chill of winter, your family is exposed to more allergens, dust, dander and germs. Even if you’ve used your central system for summer, the higher temperature from your furnace provides the ideal conditions for bacteria to multiply.
Use your mechanical room for storage
Mechanical equipment like furnaces and water heaters require clearances around them for proper operation and maintenance. For anything burning fuel, a lack of oxygen causes incomplete combustion, resulting in the dreaded production of carbon monoxide. So for your family’s safety, it’s better to have a messy living room than a crowded mechanical room.
If you need to take care of your to-don’t list with some to do’s, give us a call and we can help you prevent issues with your HVAC system this winter.