Replacing your heating and cooling system is one of the most expensive repairs you’ll make as a homeowner. And if you live in a harsh climate, you could be forced to replace it in a hurry if it fails unexpectedly. Whether you’ve just had a new system installed or you’ve had the same one for a decade,a few simple strategies for extending its life. Here are four easy ways you can keep your heating system up and running for years to come.
Change Filters Regularly
Most forced air units have disposable filters that need to be changed on a fairly regular basis. Often, homeowners might forget to do this, or simply don’t realize that it should be done routinely. Changing filters regularly can keep your heating system performing at optimal capacity. This simple step may also significantly improve the air quality in your home. Filters are inexpensive and can be purchased at your nearby home improvement store.
Schedule Routine Maintenance
Much like your car, your heating system will benefit from regular tune ups. If you live in a harsh climate with cold winters, consider scheduling an annual tune up before the temperatures drop below freezing. An HVAC contractor will come in and run your system, checking various aspects of it to make sure everything is functioning properly. Calling in a professional can help keep your heating system running well for several years to come.
Keep your Vents Open
Many homeowners with forced air systems make the mistake of closing heating vents in rooms where they don’t frequently spend time. A common misconception is that this helps to save money on heating costs. In reality, doing this can actually cost you more in the long run. The problem with closing vents is that air cannot flow freely through them. This may result in unfortunate issues like moisture problems and like mold growth. It’s better to keep your vents open, even if you aren’t using a particular space in your home in order to keep your long term costs low.
Clean out Debris and Dust
In order to keep your system working at optimal capacity, it’s a good idea to keep your heating vents free of dust and debris. Inspect them regularly to make sure that there is nothing blocking the flow of air. Dust tends to build up between the grill slats, so pay special attention to the small metal heating vents as you look for debris. If a vent looks as though it could benefit from a good cleaning, simply wipe it down with a damp rag or run a vacuum over it to remove any dust or debris that may have built up in there.
Taking steps to protect your heating system can help you avoid expensive and unexpected repairs and replacements in the future. Whether your system is new or older, make sure to change the filters regularly, schedule routine professional maintenance, keep the vents open in every room of your home, and clean out any noticeable debris and dust from vents. These four simple strategies can help protect your system and your budget from any unexpected issues.
About the author: Julian Kennedy is a heating company owner that lives in Bangor, Maine. He has worked on heating and HVAC systems for a wide variety of properties.