The state of Wisconsin isn’t known for having blazing hot summers. However, you can still benefit from preparing your HVAC system for the mild summer months. There are several important steps that can help to ensure your unit lasts throughout the summer and beyond.
Pinpoint and Repair All Noticeable Issues
One of the best ways to prepare for the summer is to tackle all of the HVAC issues you’ve been overlooking. Whether you’ve been trying to save money or you’ve gotten used to the inconveniences, it’s not a good idea to allow these problems to persist into the warmer months. Some of these issues include noticeable mold growth, high humidity levels, and low airflow. All of these problems can become even worse once the summertime rolls around.
If you’ve been enduring stuffy, muggy, and sticky indoor conditions, you most likely are dealing with extreme humidity. Increased humidity levels are one of the main causes of excessive mold inside of your home and within your HVAC system itself. If allowed to flourish, mold can create unsightly wall stains and wreak havoc on your overall health. Unchecked mold can cause sore throats, wheezing, persistent coughing, and skin rashes. For those with asthma and allergies, mold can act as a trigger, causing regular symptoms to worsen.
Low airflow is another problem that can be exacerbated during the warmer months. No matter how low your thermostat temperature is set, low or obstructed airflow will prevent you from experiencing your desired comfort levels. This malfunction can also cause your unit to work much harder than necessary, leading to premature breakdowns. Fortunately, our technicians are equipped to remedy and repair these issues before they become uncontrollable or irreparable.
Schedule Pre-Summer Maintenance
If you don’t notice any pressing issues that are in need of immediate repair, you should instead opt for pre-summer HVAC maintenance services. Preparatory maintenance is especially important if you haven’t been keeping up with a yearly maintenance schedule. During a routine tune-up, there are several tasks that we may perform. Some of these tasks include:
- Thermostat assessment
- Fan assessment
- Cleaning or replacing air filters
- Inspecting electrical wiring
Sometimes, your HVAC system itself isn’t the culprit. Rather, it could be your thermostat. Thermostat assessments allow us to check for possible malfunctions and setting glitches. The fan blower is one of the most essential components of your unit. Without it, there would be no way for air to circulate throughout your home. We can easily pinpoint and fix any problems with the fan motor or blades.
Cleaning or changing the air filter is one of the simplest maintenance tasks on the list. However, it’s also one of the most effective ways to improve the performance of your HVAC unit. Clogged air filters are one of the main culprits when it comes to restricting airflow. Additionally, dirty filters can decrease indoor air quality and place added strain on your system. In addition to the aforementioned tasks, inspecting electrical wiring may be the most beneficial in terms of safety.
Clear the Area Around Your Outdoor HVAC Unit
As part of HVAC system maintenance, you may have to deal with a build up of debris outdoors. Leaves, grass clippings, and small tree branches can easily accumulate around your air conditioner. If these debris pieces are allowed to linger for too long, they can become trapped inside the unit, causing airflow blockages, electrical issues, and condenser coil malfunctions. The best ways to prevent these issues is to rake your yard regularly and make sure all nearby tree limbs are trimmed.
Install Heat-Blocking Window Covers or Tinted Windows
If you want to take a bit of a load off of your air conditioning system, you might want to look into purchasing heat-blocking blinds, curtains, or drapes. Unlike standard window coverings, thermal coverings can help to keep a significant amount of sunlight from entering your house. Similarly, tinted windows can work to block out direct sunlight and help to keep your home at a consistent temperature. Although these window accessories can’t replace the power and effectiveness of an AC unit, they’re able to provide you with some noticeable relief.
Invest in a Dehumidifier
The higher the humidity levels are inside of your home, the harder your air conditioner will have to work to reach your desired temperature. This could cause you to run your HVAC unit for extended periods of time, leading to unexpected system failures. Luckily, a dehumidifier can provide some much-needed assistance. As its name suggests, the main purpose of a dehumidifier is to remove excess moisture and lower humidity levels. Therefore, by making this pre-summer purchase, you would be helping to ensure that your air conditioner has some relief once outdoor temperatures begin to rise.
Set Your Thermostat Properly
Along with making pre-summer preparations, there are a few things you can do once the warn months begin to roll in. Setting your thermostat to around 78 degrees Fahrenheit, for example, can greatly reduce your HVAC energy consumption. This is a relatively comfortable indoor temperature that shouldn’t overwork your air conditioner. Not only can this help to preserve your equipment, but proper temperature settings can also lower your monthly bills.
Install a Programmable Thermostat
If keeping up with temperature settings isn’t your strength, you might want to consider installing a programmable thermostat. These convenient devices are able to be preset according to your everyday schedule. For instance, if you work away from home, you can schedule the thermostat to rise to a warmer temperature while you’re away. You can then program the temperature to decrease 10 to 15 minutes before you’re scheduled to arrive back home. That way, you can experience indoor comfort without overworking your air conditioning unit.
Fix Insulation Issues
No matter how thorough your summer preparation process may be, if you don’t address insulation problems, your efforts probably won’t be very effective. Gaps and cracks around your doors, windows, and walls allow cold air to escape. When this occurs, your AC unit will have to compensate for the loss of air. Overcompensation can lead to excessive wear and tear as well as frequent repair issues. HVAC malfunctions are bad enough by themselves. However, air conditioning issues in the middle of the summer are especially difficult to deal with. The good news is that these problems can be solved by sealing all air leaks with caulking and weatherstripping.
Southport Home Services proudly serves Wausau, Wisconsin and surrounding areas. As a Better Business Bureau-accredited company and an authorized Carrier Dealer, we’re more than qualified to assist you with all of your HVAC-related issues. Some of our services include air conditioning maintenance, air conditioning repairs, indoor air quality services, and furnace installations. We also offer various plumbing services, including drain cleaning, fixture installations, and sump pump repairs. Contact Southport Home Services today to inquire about our full list of services or to schedule an appointment.