Your HVAC system works hard to maintain a comfortable environment in your Jacksonville Beach, Florida, home. As it does, it’ll accumulate dirt and grime and experience wear and tear over time. You have to properly maintain your unit to maximize its performance, energy efficiency and longevity. While it’s interesting and rewarding to take HVAC maintenance into your own hands, it’s essential to know that it’s best to leave certain tasks to the pros. Below are two maintenance tasks you can DIY and two tasks that require professional attention.
HVAC Maintenance Tasks You Can Do Yourself
Some HVAC maintenance tasks don’t require expert knowledge or professional equipment. However, this doesn’t mean they’re less important than more complex tasks. The following are two easy and safe maintenance tasks you should undertake on a regular basis:
Replacing the Air Filter
The air filter is an important component that traps dirt, dust and debris. As a result, it prevents them from building up in your HVAC system. However, it won’t be able to serve its purpose well if it clogs. This can cause your unit to experience extra strain and use more energy as it attempts to force air through the filter.
It’s advisable that you check your air filter once a month. If it has gathered so much dirt that you can’t see light through it, you have to replace it with a new one. Generally, you should change your filter at least once every three months.
Cleaning Around the Condenser
The condenser is the part of your HVAC system located outside your home. It’s one of the most important and costly components, so it can be expensive to repair if it goes bad. Since it’s located outdoors, this condenser is constantly exposed to dirt, debris and the elements. Over time, debris may accumulate around or get inside the unit, causing hindrance to airflow or the proper functioning of its components.
To make sure your condenser can do its job properly, clean the area around it every now and then. Clear away any debris or objects within 2 feet of the condenser so that they won’t block airflow. Also, trim grass, plants and hedges that are growing too close to the unit.
HVAC Maintenance Tasks You Shouldn’t Do Yourself
Some HVAC maintenance tasks may require you to open up a certain component and have some knowledge of how it works. You’ll need specific methods, tools and supplies to get the job done. If you haven’t undergone professional training, it’s best to let qualified HVAC service technicians handle these tasks. Below are two HVAC tasks you shouldn’t do yourself:
Cleaning and Fixing the Air Ducts
If you’re using a central HVAC system, you have to clean your air ducts regularly to maintain proper airflow and good indoor air quality. Additionally, ducts may become loose or sustain damage over time, resulting in air leaks. As one of the main causes of energy waste, air leaks can put additional strain on your HVAC unit and increase your energy costs.
To thoroughly clean your air ducts, you need to have the necessary equipment to reach deep into them. HVAC professionals not only have specialized equipment for cleaning ducts. They also know how to locate and properly fix cracks, holes and loose joints to prevent air leaks.
Cleaning the Condenser Coils
If the coils in your outdoor condenser are dirty and grimy, they can undermine your HVAC system’s ability to produce your desired temperatures, resulting in a more uncomfortable home. As such, it’s important to clean these coils on a regular basis. While it isn’t a difficult task, cleaning the condenser coils requires a special technique because the coils have delicate fins that can easily bend or damage. Therefore, it’s safer to hire an HVAC professional to perform this maintenance task.
Has it been a while since your HVAC system last underwent proper maintenance? If so, consider contacting the helpful team at Ocean State Air Conditioning & Heating to find out about our top-notch HVAC maintenance services. Call us today at 904-222-8411.
Image provided by Shutterstock