Well done on picking out your first home! You are obviously pleased with your investment, though you might feel overloaded by all these new responsibilities. Now that you’re the homeowner, not the renter, it’s your job to care for all your home’s appliances and utility equipment, like the heating and cooling equipment.
If the only interaction you’ve ever experienced with a furnace or air conditioner is to use the thermostat, you have more to learn. Get a head start with these HVAC system tips for first-time homeowners.
Know the Parts of an HVAC System
HVAC stands for heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Unless you live in the perfect climate, your new home most likely has this system to keep you warm in the winter and cool throughout the summer. Here are the important 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 connected to return and supply registers with regards to air-forced systems including ACs, heat pumps and furnaces.
- Radiators or hot water distribution systems in the case of 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, your landlord probably handled 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 responsible for this, you can provide preventive maintenance the attention it deserves. First, prioritize these do-it-yourself HVAC maintenance tasks:
- Replace the air filter every 30 to 90 days.
- Carefully hose down the outdoor unit and cut back vegetation to increase airflow.
- Keep all air registers open to sustain proper system balance.
Then, arrange 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 measuring air leaks in the ductwork. Expect the following perks when you call a professional to inspect your system every year:
- Energy savings
- Fewer breakdowns
- More affordable repair bills
- Enhanced home comfort
- Longer system life span
- Peace of mind
Watch for Signs of Trouble
Repairing and replacing the HVAC system is the homeowner’s job. Watch for these signs that it’s time to call a heating and cooling specialist:
- Excessive noise: Don’t neglect a screeching, rattling, clanking or banging sound. It could be a cry for help from your home's furnace or air conditioner.
- Comfort or air quality issues: Uneven temperatures, high or low humidity, stagnant rooms and mold-like odors are routinely associated with defective HVAC equipment.
- Poor energy efficiency: Are your bills suddenly going up? This might mean your heating and cooling system isn’t working properly.
- Old age: Like all mechanical systems, HVAC systems inevitably fail. The average life span of a furnace or boiler is 15 years, while air conditioners and heat pumps run just about a decade.
Learn More About the HVAC Replacement Process
If the finicky furnace or air conditioner can’t be fixed, you’ll need to replace it with an HVAC specialist's help. Here’s how this works:
- Explain the problem to your technician and permit them to investigate it more in-depth.
- The technician will next diagnose the problem and recommend possible solutions. A repair could be feasible, but depending on the unit’s condition and age, a replacement may be more cost-effective.
- You can obtain multiple opinions and estimates from available contractors if you so choose.
- When you call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, a residential sales consultant will go over what HVAC system, brand, fuel type and efficiency rating is perfect for you.
- The contractor should provide a written estimate outlining the work needed, the equipment they’ll install and the total price. You might also get information about warranty coverage, service plans and financing options.
- Schedule the installation once you decide what system you want. The technician will handle everything, like hauling away the old equipment for safe disposal.
- The sales consultant should review the new system with you, describing how to use it, addressing any questions and providing all the necessary documentation.
Call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning
If you have questions about these HVAC system guidelines, don't wait to get in touch with Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning. We prioritize customer education to help you make the best decision about your home comfort system. Our team is well-versed in a full range of HVAC services, so reach out for anything from furnace maintenance
to AC repair
to heat pump installation
. For more information or to ask about an estimate, please get in touch with your local Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning office