Three Ways to Show Your HVAC Some Love This Valentine’s Day

 In System Maintenance

Ah, Valentine’s Day. The romantic holiday brings to mind images of flowers, chocolates and… your air conditioning unit? Although caring for your HVAC unit may be the furthest thing from your mind in February, don’t forget that warmer months are just around the corner. Regular HVAC maintenance in the months before cooling your home can extend the life of your unit. As an added bonus, it can also lower your electric bill by increasing efficiency. (Maybe the extra money you save can go toward a romantic Valentine’s dinner? It’s your call.)

Taking care of your unit doesn’t have to be complicated. If you’re ready to get started, here are three of our best simple tips for showing your HVAC some love this Valentine’s Day.

1. Clear External Debris

While it’s a good idea to leave internal system cleaning to the professionals, there are things you can do to clean up the outside of your unit. Debris, such as leaves and sticks, can decrease the efficiency of your HVAC unit.

If there is dirt and debris on the outside of your unit, take a large paintbrush and gently clear away as much as you can. The condenser fins (metal pieces on the outside of the unit that look like a grill) are likely to catch falling sticks and leaves. Carefully brush away anything you see that has caught on the unit.

Don’t forget to also check the area around the outside your unit. There should always be at least a two-foot radius of clear space around it. If you have any equipment, shrubbery or other items closer than that, they can negatively impact the airflow of your unit, making it less efficient. It may feel like a pain to move items at the time, particularly something more permanent like landscaping, but it’s financially worth it for the long-term health of your HVAC unit.

As a safety reminder, step one for any HVAC maintenance is always to turn off your unit. Make sure the power is completely shut off before you begin maintenance.

2. Check (or Change) the Filter

Are you checking your filter monthly? A dirty air filter is one of the factors that can most negatively affect the efficiency of your HVAC unit. Most standard air filters need to be replaced every three months or so. They’ll likely need to be replaced more often than that if you have pets or suffer from allergies.

Checking your filter each and every month is an easy way to keep your unit running as efficiently as possible. If it looks dirtier than usual, that might be a sign to go ahead and replace it, even if you haven’t hit the three-month mark. For most air filters, it’s as simple as purchasing one from the store. To clean a reusable air filter, simply wipe it down with a damp cloth.

3. Schedule Professional Maintenance

For more thorough cleaning, it’s better to consult the professionals. Scheduling regular maintenance for your HVAC unit can extend its life and save you money. The better care you take of your unit now, the better it will perform. Preventing an issue is always better than fixing a problem.

Generally, you should have your HVAC unit professionally inspected once a year. Beyond simple cleaning you can do yourself, a technician will clean the internal coils, check all the hoses and connections and make sure your thermostat is correctly calibrated. An annual tune-up is the best way to make sure your unit is running safely and efficiently.

At Barineau Heating and Air, we make annual maintenance stress-free so you can worry about more important things (like your Valentine plans). Join Barineau’s Total Comfort Service Program to get annual inspections, a discount on repairs, same-day service and more. Now that’s true love! Give us a call today at 850.580.4029 today to get started.

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