How to Prepare Your HVAC System for the Upcoming Winter Season

Winter is coming soon, which means furnaces and heating systems are going to be on all day and night to keep millions of homes comfortable and warm. Many homeowners want to know how to prepare their heating and cooling systems for winter as temperatures drop.

You can make sure that your heating system is ready to heat your home efficiently this winter by taking the proper steps to maintain, test, and protect them. You can keep your family warm all winter with reliable heating equipment that works well.

We share the top tips for homeowners to prepare their HVAC units for winter.

Schedule a Duct Cleaning

One of the most important aspects of maintaining a healthy home is air quality. This includes both the air inside and outside your home. One way to ensure that you have clean air inside is by scheduling a furnace duct cleaning.

A furnace duct cleaning is a process where the inside of the ducts are inspected, cleaned, and sanitized. That’s why you need to find a trusted local company to do the cleaning. For instance, if you live near Scarborough, Toronto, you’ll need to find a heating Scarborough-based company that provides these kinds of services.

The cost of this service will vary depending on factors such as your location and the size of your home. For example, a small apartment might cost $150, while a large house could be closer to $500.

Change the Air Filter

Filters protect forced air HVAC systems against dirt, dust, and debris. This prevents inefficient performance and damage to fragile internal components. Air filters need to be replaced regularly. This can vary depending on the type of filter you own. Check the manufacturer’s information for the recommended frequency.

You should change your filter every year if you have not done so recently. It is important to check the filter every month to know if it needs replacing sooner than expected.

A dirty filter can cause a lot of problems for your furnace or heat pump this winter. Filters that are dirty can’t do their jobs. More contaminants can pass through to the furnace or air handler and cause damage. Filters that are clogged with contaminants prevent proper airflow through the furnace or air handler, which can cause equipment to heat up, causing it to consume more energy and make it less efficient.

Clean the Furnace

It is the homeowner’s responsibility for keeping the inside of the furnace area clean. You’ll need to clean it properly to prevent dirt and debris from getting into the furnace or air supply. Also, to ensure that the furnace is free of obstructions, remove any items from the area. Keep flammable items at least six feet from the furnace, and don’t place items against the furnace’s exterior.

Access doors and exterior panels must be securely attached to the furnace or air handler. If some panels are missing, the HVAC system won’t turn on.

Reprogram the Thermostat

  • When switching between seasons, it is important to adjust your temperature settings. Your individual preferences for heating or cooling will vary, and your schedule may be subject to seasonal changes, so it is important that you adjust the setback periods.
  • Set the temperature at a comfortable but efficient level during the hours that your home is occupied. A temperature of 68 degrees is recommended to maximize heating efficiency and comfort.
  • To reduce heating waste and energy costs, turn down thermostats 10 to 15 degrees, for at most eight hours per day, when the home is not occupied. The heating system will run less and last longer.
  • Select AUTO for fan settings. This setting will allow the blower only to operate when the heating system cycles. The fan will not run without heat and therefore does not consume too much energy.

Service Your Chimneys

You need to call a professional who will inspect your chimneys for dirt and any issues that need to be fixed at least once a year. Clean chimneys will provide you with a quality air and prolong the time your HVAC system lasts.

Having a professional clean your chimneys once a year has many benefits. They will not only remove any soot but also any other harmful substances like tar, which can be hard to get rid of if you don’t know what you’re doing.

Bottom Line

Winter is approaching, as are low temperatures. You need to be well-prepared to keep your home warm and comfortable during the cold months. By following the tips given in this article, you’ll be able to provide your home with warmth and comfort thanks to your maintained HVAC system.

- by Matt Watts