Congratulations on picking out your first home! You are obviously pleased with your investment, though you might feel overwhelmed by all these new responsibilities. Now that you’re the owner, not the renter, it’s your job to take care of all your home’s appliances and utility equipment, including the heating and cooling equipment.
If the only interaction you’ve ever come across with a furnace or air conditioner is to adjust the thermostat, you have plenty to learn. Try these HVAC system basics for brand-new homeowners.
Know the Different Components of an HVAC System
HVAC stands for heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Unless you live in an idyllic climate, your new home most likely has this system to keep you warm during the winter and cool for the summer. Here are the basic parts of an HVAC system:
- Comfort systems, like an air conditioner, air-source heat pump, furnace, boiler, geothermal heat pump or ductless mini-split, to name a few choices.
- Ductwork fixed to return and supply registers with regards to air-forced systems including ACs, heat pumps and furnaces.
- Radiators or hot water distribution systems such as boilers.
- Indoor air quality solutions, including an air filter, whole-house humidifier, whole-house dehumidifier, air purifier or energy-recovery ventilator.
- Thermostat for indoor climate control.
Appreciate the Importance of Preventive Maintenance
When you rented, the landlord most likely managed any HVAC maintenance tasks like replacing the air filter. They may or may not have also handled the bill for thorough heating and cooling inspections.
Now that you’re in charge, you can offer preventive maintenance the attention it deserves. First, complete these do-it-yourself HVAC maintenance tasks:
- Replace the air filter every 30 to 90 days.
- Gently hose down the outdoor unit and cut back vegetation to enhance airflow.
- Keep all air registers open to maintain proper system balance.
Then, request yearly maintenance for each HVAC unit. Only a qualified professional can execute in-depth tasks like cleaning the furnace burners, recharging the AC refrigerant and identifying air leaks in the ductwork. Count on the following advantages when you hire a professional to inspect your system every year:
- Energy savings
- Fewer breakdowns
- Smaller repair bills
- Superior home comfort
- Extended system life span
- Peace of mind
Keep an Eye Out for Signs of Trouble
Repairing and replacing the HVAC system is the homeowner’s responsibility. Watch for these signs that it’s time to hire a heating and cooling specialist:
- Excess noise: Don’t neglect a whining, rattling, clanking or banging sound. It might be a cry for help from your furnace or air conditioner.
- Comfort or air quality problems: Uneven temperatures, high or low humidity, stale rooms and mold-like odors are regularly linked to defective HVAC equipment.
- Reduced energy efficiency: Are your bills suddenly going up? This might mean your heating and cooling system isn’t functioning correctly.
- Old age: Like all mechanical utilities, HVAC systems ultimately wear out. The standard life span of a furnace or boiler is 15 years, while air conditioners and heat pumps last just about a decade.
Learn More About the HVAC Replacement Process
If your damaged furnace or air conditioner can’t be restored, you’ll need to replace it with an HVAC contractor’s help. Here’s how this works:
- Explain the problem to the contractor and allow them to investigate it more in-depth.
- The technician will determine the problem and offer the best solutions. A repair might be viable, but according to the unit’s condition and age, a replacement may be more cost-effective.
- You can acquire various opinions and estimates from available contractors if you so choose.
- When you work with Midland Air Service Experts, a residential sales consultant will go over what HVAC system, brand, fuel type and efficiency rating is ideal for you.
- The tech will provide a written estimate outlining the work necessary, the equipment they’ll install and the final cost. You might also receive details about warranty coverage, service plans and financing options.
- Schedule the installation once you decide what system you want. The technician will take care of everything, including hauling away the old equipment for proper disposal.
- The sales consultant will walk through the new system with you, explaining how to use it, answering any questions and giving you all the necessary documentation.
Call Midland Air Service Experts
If you have concerns about these HVAC system basics, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Midland Air Service Experts. We prioritize customer education to help you make the best decision about your HVAC system. Our team is proficient in a full range of HVAC services, so give us a call for everything from furnace maintenance to AC repair to heat pump installation. For more information or to ask about an estimate, please contact your local Midland Air Service Experts office today.