5 HVAC Maintenance Tasks To Tackle Before Winter's End

Posted on: 25 January 2018

Sooner or later, the bitter cold of winter will give way to warmer and more pleasant springtime temperatures. When the time comes for your HVAC system to switch from heating to cooling, you'll want it to be in the best shape possible. To prepare for the upcoming seasonal change, you should invest in some well-needed maintenance before the close of the current season.

1. Replace Your HVAC Air Filter

This is a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised at how many homeowners forget to perform this simple yet crucial maintenance task. Changing your air filter on a regular basis is absolutely crucial for your HVAC system's performance.

If you haven't changed your air filter within the past month, you should go ahead and change it now. Most HVAC manufacturers recommend fresh filter replacements every three months, with monthly changes recommended if you have pets or severe allergies.

2. Clean the Outdoor HVAC Cabinet

Your HVAC system's performance can also take a hit if dead leaves, branches, and other yard debris find their way inside your outdoor HVAC cabinet. Start by clearing away any and all debris from the base of the outdoor cabinet. Next, open the cabinet and clear as much debris out of the unit as possible.

3. Check and Clean the Evaporator Coil

Carefully inspect the evaporator coil for any signs of damage or corrosion. Bent fins and visible pitting can both cause performance problems for your HVAC unit later on. If the evaporator coil appears dusty or shows signs of mold or mildew growth, carefully scrub and rinse the coil using a soft-bristled brush, mild detergent, and warm water.

4. Check Your Supply and Return Air Vents

Dust and debris buildup can put a significant strain on your HVAC system if left unchecked. The supply and return air ducts are prime areas for dust and debris buildup. Inspect these areas for any signs of damage and then vacuum as much debris from the vents as possible.

5. Check and Test Your Thermostat

Make sure your thermostat is in working condition before the close of the season. Don't forget to change your programmable thermostat's settings to reflect spring and summer cooling demands. You can save plenty of money on your energy bills by setting your thermostat to 78 degrees Fahrenheit while you're at home and 7 to 10 degrees higher while you're away.

Keep in mind that the above end-of-season maintenance tasks are no substitute for professional HVAC service. You should also invest in a seasonal service call from your trusted HVAC technician. Your technician will not only conduct a thorough inspection of your HVAC system but also perform high-level maintenance tasks like checking and recharging refrigerant.