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4 Tips to Keep Your Heating and Air Conditioning Unit from Breaking Down

Have you ever wondered if you could be doing more to extend the life of your heating and air conditioning unit? Here are some common mistakes and solutions on how to maintenance your system throughout the year. 

air conditioning
 

1. Heating up the Thermostat

Covering up a thermostat will certainly heat it up, but direct sunlight and lamps, televisions, stereos, or other heat generators that are too close can accidentally drive up the temperature reading and overwork the air conditioner. It can also under-work the furnace. Try to leave your thermostat alone and let it work as it was designed! 

This next one is huge and we can't stress it enough: 

vents

2. Blocking Air Return Vents

This is one of the number one issues we see when we arrive at a client's home. A return air vent is not the most appealing thing to look at, and if it really bothers you, you can have something similar to what is pictured above to add decorative appeal. But never try to hide them beneath furniture or behind drapes. The system wouldn't be getting the air flow it needs to run efficiently and maintain a comfortable temperature indoors. Keep them uncovered and dust them often for a healthy, more efficient HVAC system.

filter

3. Using a Super-Efficient Air Filter

While some people assume that a higher number listed on the filter package must mean it’s better, others purchase whatever filter is least expensive. A cheap, flimsy filter will result in poor indoor air quality. However, a very efficient air filter — which is indicated by a higher MERV Rating (or, Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value.) — can cause too much drag in air flow for the standard residential HVAC system to effectively handle. This is especially true if it is an older system.
Instead of going by the price tag or the manufacturer’s marketing, check your HVAC manual for recommendations or talk to a professional. The best air filter is balanced between airborne particulate removal and overall heating and cooling system efficiency.
heating

4. Closing vents and doors to unused areas

This can decrease the efficiency of a central air conditioning system and cause humidity problems. It is a common myth that closing off rooms will save money─ even if the rooms aren't used very often. Closing registers and doors for a forced-air heating and cooling system in a typical, insulated home will actually make the unit work harder and cost you more.

What kind of advice has your HVAC contractor given you to improve your system's performance? 

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