Buying a home is exciting but full of pitfalls too. There are several items that you must be concerned with when moving into a new home.
One such area that will require your attention is the HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system. HVAC maintenance mistakes can cost homeowners thousands of dollars at a time when extra cash might be scarce.
No need to panic! Simply avoid these 5 HVAC maintenance mistakes.
Mistake 1. Not Knowing Specifics
Not becoming familiar with your HVAC equipment is can be disastrous for homeowners. If your system is too large or small for the size of your house, it will cost you in higher electric bills and wear and tear on your system.
Different HVAC units require different refrigerant, filters, and other parts, so knowing the brand, model number, and make of yours is essential. You don’t want incorrect equipment to lead to costly repairs or replacements.
Mistake 2. Not Considering Energy Efficiency
The more energy-efficient your HVAC system is, the less money you pay in energy bills.
HVAC energy efficiency is measured by a SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating. The higher the SEER number, the more energy-efficient it is. Brand-new HVAC units will have higher SEER ratings, but this rating deteriorates as the system ages.
A professional HVAC service can evaluate the efficiency and other specifications of your unit, offering advice on purchasing a new one if needed.
Mistake 3. Not Checking the Outdoor Unit
One of the biggest HVAC maintenance mistakes is ignoring the location of the outdoor portion of your unit. This equipment must be away from any kind of roof water, or flood water potential.
Make sure nothing is covering the outdoor unit as well. If there is clutter, dirt, or yard debris around the unit, airflow will be disturbed, so make sure that area is cleaned often.
Mistake 4. Not Considering Ductwork
You might not think about ductwork when buying a new home. But, if the ducts are old, have leaks, or are the incorrect size and design, you will lose air efficiency. Insulation, either around or inside the ductwork is important for the same reason.
Ask your home inspector for specifics on the age, design, and efficiency of the home’s ductwork. If your home is older, an upgrade might be worth the extra money.
Mistake 5. Going it alone
The cost of recovery from DIY repairs on your air system will overshadow any HVAC maintenance contract costs by a professional, so by all means, don’t go it alone!
Once or twice a year, your HVAC technician will flush your system, check your outdoor and indoor equipment, replace your air filters (and remind you to do the same every 30-90 days,) and advise you on what you can do yourself to keep your HVAC unit healthy.
Consider a maintenance contract to be a worthwhile investment.
An HVAC Professional Can Help
No matter the climate, an HVAC professional is your best ally when it comes to buying, installing, and servicing your new or older HVAC system.
If you figure the costs of your HVAC system into your housing budget and take the time to ask the right questions, you can rest assured that your home will have comfortable, clean, and efficient air.