Most homes are heated and cooled by an HVAC system. This system can account for up to 40% of the energy consumed in your home. For this reason, it’s important to make sure your system is running efficiently. Here are a few HVAC maintenance tasks that you can do to keep your unit operating smoothly.

HVAC Maintenance: Change the Filters

Your heating and cooling system filter traps dirt, debris, and pollutants from the air so these contaminants won’t be circulated through your home. Change the filter as recommended. In most systems this is every 30 to 90 days.

A clean filter allows air to pass through easily and keeps your unit from having to work as hard to keep your home comfortable. If you or a family member suffers from allergies, replace your regular HVAC filters with HEPA filters to better improve air quality.

Give the System a Break

Even your HVAC system can benefit from some time off. When the weather is mild, turn the system off and use fans to help control the temperature in your home. In the summer, make sure ceiling fans are rotating in a counter-clockwise direction. This will move the air downwards creating a wind-chill effect to cool people in the room. If evenings are cooler, open windows and use box fans to maintain a comfortable temperature indoors and reduce cooling costs.

Inspecting for Debris is Important for HVAC Maintenance

Part of your HVAC unit may be outside the home. The condenser and compressor of the air conditioner are housed in a metal cabinet with a fan. Check this part of your system a few times every month and remove leaves, twigs, branches, and other debris that may block air flow. Keep children’s toys and outdoor furniture several feet away.

Clean the Air Vents

Once or twice a year, do a thorough cleaning of the air vents in your home. Wipe the vent covers down to remove dust. If it has been a while since they’ve been cleaned, you can remove the covers and soak them in a solution of dish detergent and warm water.

With the vent covers off and using your vacuum’s attachments, vacuum 10 or 12 inches into the air duct. Keeping the ducts clean will extend the life of your HVAC system, improve indoor air quality, and help the system work more effectively. Every few years, hire a professional to clean out the entire vent system in your home.

Checkpoint Home Inspections provides inspection services to Coastal Oregon. Contact us to schedule an appointment.