The Do’s and Don’ts of Spring HVAC Use
Do Reprogram Your Thermostat
Do you have a programmable thermostat? A seven to 10 degree Fahrenheit change for eight hours daily can save you up to 10 percent on home HVAC costs, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. A programmable thermostat makes it easy to change the temperature in your home (whether you use the heater or AC system) for part of the day.
The chill of the winter months requires you to turn down the thermostat setting for part of the day. This drops the temperature down and reduces the workload on your furnace. But in the summer, you need to raise the temperature to limit energy use. If you’ve programmed your thermostat for a winter-time setting, now is the time to review the settings and make seasonal changes.
Don’t Forget About the Furnace
Even though the weather is warmer, spring evenings can get cold. Don’t get stuck with a chilly house. While you aren’t likely to use your home’s heater as much as you would in January, you still need to make sure it works — and works well.
If you’re tempted to let recent wear and tear or damage go until next fall, don’t wait for service. Contact a qualified HVAC professional as soon as possible. The technician can inspect your furnace and make repairs while you still need to use the heating part of your HVAC system.
Do Schedule AC Maintenance
Along with furnace repairs, the in-between season is the perfect time for routine air conditioner maintenance. If your furnace requires service, schedule both appointments together. This saves you time and may reduce unnecessary trip fees.
Pre-season AC maintenance typically includes an inspection, cleaning, and refrigerant check. The technician may also need to repair or replace parts as needed (based on the condition of your AC system).
Don’t Use the Wrong Setting
Now that the weather is warm you turned the AC up. But a wishful temperature setting doesn’t guarantee a summer-like indoor environment. Pay attention to the actual temperature—both indoors and outside.
A cool spring night, followed by a warm day, may still leave your home’s interior chilly. This can make your home uncomfortable for family, friends, or guests. Don’t set your thermostat based on the calendar month. Instead, use the actual weather forecast. It’s possible you’ll need the heater at night and the AC system during the day—depending on the weather.
Do Carefully Clean Your Yard
Did you let your yard go during the winter months? While the heater was on and you were comfortable indoors, leaves and debris gathered around your AC system’s outdoor condenser unit. Whether your yard is overgrown or the condenser is covered with mud and muck, a spring-time yard cleanup can remove obstructions to your AC system’s ability to function properly.
As you clean and clear your yard, try to keep leftover yard waste and grass clippings away from the condenser unit. Natural materials caught inside the condenser can cause odd noises and potential damage to the system. Even though yard debris is a common cause of condenser noise, it isn’t the only culprit. If you’re not sure what the noise is, call an HVAC professional for an inspection.