HVAC professionals recommend spring maintenance to prepare for summer heat :: WRAL.com

Up until now, your heating and air conditioning has probably been taking it easy.

“It was a very mild spring. Now the systems have to actually work and do their job,” said Jimmy Freeman, an HVAC systems teacher at Wake Technical Community College.

He says there is a lot homeowners can do to avoid problems and costly repairs. First, the pollen season on the outdoor units can be rough. “The pollen is sucked in, so I would strongly recommend calling an expert and having an expert check the system,” he advised.

Inspection and simple maintenance can be cheaper than replacing worn parts.

In addition, homeowners should avoid growing grass or weeds near the unit. “If they are mowing grass, make sure they send the grass clippings away from the unit,” Freeman said.

Tree droppings can be just as harmful. Freeman said, “Just make sure you keep it free of anything that might prevent air from getting into it.”

The homeowner’s main job is to replace the internal filter, typically every 2 to 3 months. “You want to make sure that when you install the filter, the arrow points into the unit the way the airflow is,” Freeman said, pointing to the arrow printed on one edge of the filter frame.

Lots of carpet can also be a challenge for your filtration system. “You need to change your filter more often than if you have luxury vinyl planks or hardwood,” advised Freeman.

If you keep dirt and dust out of the open air, your device won’t be able to work too hard either.

Freeman also recommends having a professional install a programmable thermostat. Some can send you messages about how much energy you are using, or you can even control the indoor temperature at home with a smartphone while you are on vacation.

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