Annual HVAC Maintenance Is Important
Have you scheduled your annual HVAC system maintenance yet? If not, call Wolfer’s today: 503-220-1901
Some homeowners may think that since the system is working just fine that a service call isn’t necessary. But, it’s more important than you think.
Why Is Maintenance So Important?
The purpose of a system inspection is to preform preventative maintenance to keep it up and running all season long with no surprise breakdowns, while operating at top efficiency. Few people spend time with their HVAC system. They are usually placed in some distant corner of the attic where it’s easy to forget about and neglect. Your HVAC systems need maintenance just like your car: if you never have the oil changed or take your car in for any kind of tune-up, you wouldn’t expect it to last more than a few years. Your system is a complex piece of machinery that needs regular maintenance, too. No matter how expensive the system is or what the manufacturer promises, your heating or cooling system is subject to breakdowns and needs repairs every so often. Reduce the incidence of repairs by keeping on top of annual maintenance.
Annual HVAC System Maintenance Benefits
What can you expect from your newly tuned-up HVAC system? Is the cost of maintenance really worth it? You should consider that some benefits of regular maintenance are immediate while others prevent future problems from developing.
Some of the most prominent benefits include:
- Lower energy bills:
Over time, heating and systems become less efficient. As an inefficient system slowly loses its ability to keep your home comfortable, the system requires increasing amounts of energy to keep running.
- Fewer repairs:
Scheduling a tune-up right away if you detect problems helps catch problems before they become disastrous. For example, a fraying belt could result in strange operating noises. If your HVAC technician replaces it immediately, you avoid the expense of additional repairs that result from a snapped belt. By preventing future damage and repairs, annual air conditioning maintenance pays for itself.
- Reduce the chance of a major breakdown:
breakdowns almost always occur at the most inconvenient time. It also costs more time and money to repair a major breakdown. Regular maintenance lowers the odds of breakdowns interrupting your day.
- Longer equipment life:
HVAC equipment functions best when it is regularly serviced and cleaned. One malfunctioning part can cause a domino effect that causes the entire system to break down. Regular maintenance makes your system more efficient, which adds years to the equipment’s lifespan.
- Safer equipment operation:
A failing air conditioning system does more than cost a lot of money to repair; it is also a major safety hazard. Damaged equipment may cause carbon monoxide gas to accumulate or develop a short circuit. CO2 can cause health problems and sparks can start fires. Your family’s safety is the primary reason to schedule annual HVAC system maintenance.
D-I-Y Maintenance Tasks
Not every maintenance task requires a professional HVAC technician. There are some you can do and save a few dollars.
- Check HVAC air filters every month. Hold your filter up to the light. If you can see through it, it is safe to use another month. If you cannot see through, it is time to replace. Clogged filters make your system work harder.
- Remove leaves and debris from around the outdoor unit and trim back foliage to at least 18 inches from the outdoor unit to prevent blockages
- Hose down the outdoor unit when dirt begins to accumulate on it
- Keep supply and return registers unblocked by drapes, rugs or furniture
Maintenance You Should Leave to the Pros
When your HVAC system needs a thorough tune-up, it requires skills, tools and knowledge that only experienced Wolfer’s HVAC technicians can deliver. Plan to schedule annual HVAC system maintenance once in the spring for your cooling equipment and again in the fall for your heating system. If you have a heat pump, the combined heating/cooling system should receive maintenance once a year.
Your HVAC system technician will take these steps to inspect your cooling system:
- Check the thermostat:
The technician ensures the thermostat is calibrated correctly to prevent efficient cooling. If you don’t have a programmable thermostat installed, the technician may recommend one and install it for you on the spot.
- Tighten electrical connections:
Loose connections are dangerous and can cause improper operation that shortens the equipment’s lifespan. The technician also measures voltage and current on equipment motors.
- Lubricate all moving parts:
Lack of lubrication causes high amounts of friction in the system, which can cause it to overheat and break down. Adding lubricant keeps moving parts running smoothly against one another, decreasing electricity use and lowering your energy bills.
- Inspect and clear the condensation drain:
Cooling equipment and condensing furnaces produce condensation when they operate. Under normal conditions, the condensation collects in a pan and drains away to the outside of your home. Over time sludge or algae can form in the drainpipe and create a blockage. If the line is clogged, the drain pan may overflow and cause water damage to the equipment or your home, especially during times of high usage.
- Check system controls:
The technician verifies that the start cycle, operation and shut-off sequence should occur in a particular fashion and the system functions safely and properly.
- Clean and adjust the blower:
Issues with the blower can decrease equipment efficiency by up to 15 percent. Making regular adjustments to the blower ensures proper airflow.
- Clean the evaporator and condenser coils:
Dirty coils decrease efficiency and make the equipment run longer. Cleaning the coils an important part of maintaining the air conditioning system’s capacity, lowering energy bills and prolonging equipment life.
- Check refrigerant charge:
An undercharged system may indicate the system has a leak.
Our Wolfer’s Home Services Planned Service Agreement
These are just a few of the standard checks that should be performed by a reliable HVAC technician. Wolfer’s Heating & Air Conditioning offers a full 28 point check-up to help ensure your system is operating efficiently and reliably.
Wolfer’s HVAC Performance Inspection includes the following visual checks*:
- Thermostat calibration
- Air filter
- Blower components
- Correct airflow
- Electrical connections
- Proper system operation
- Installation quality
- Equipment area
- Equipment clearances
- Equipment condition
- Evaporator coils
- Starting capabilities
- Safety controls
- Temperature differentiation
- Refrigerant pressure
- Condensate drains
- Equipment match
- Heat mode
- Defrost cycle
- Auxiliary heat operation
- Heat exchanger
- Ignition assembly
- Burner assembly
- Vent clearances
- Combustion air
- Gas pressure
- Gas piping
And that’s not all. Wolfer’s always goes the extra mile with every service we offer. In addition to these 28 checks, we’re equipped to evaluate your home’s air and make sure it’s as clean, comfortable, and as safe as possible. Our exclusive Home Health™ Report Card is included in your heating or cooling system inspection and provides an easy to understand assessment of risks associated with the air inside your home. More importantly, we provide affordable solutions for your cooling system needs.
An important part of owning a home is having a complete home service contractor with the right skills and experience for the job you need completed. For over a century, Wolfer’s Home Services has been the contractor of choice for quality-minded customers. We offer complete HVAC and indoor air quality services as well as complete plumbing services, and water treatment designed specifically for your home or business. Besides the fact that we have earned a reputation for being the best in the business, there are many more reasons to choose Wolfer’s for all your home service needs. Call us today at 503-220-1901 or request your appointment with us online »