As summer gives way to fall and the weather turns cool, there are certain steps that should be taken to prepare your home for the winter. This process, collectively known as winterization, is best done before the cold weather hits in full force. There are many different projects included in this winterization process, but one of the key concerns is ensuring that your HVAC unit is ready for the cold weather ahead. Ensuring that the unit is ready for winter will go a long way toward reducing cold winter’s drafts and increasing the longevity of your HVAC unit.
One step involved in winterizing an HVAC unit is ensuring that the air conditioning vents are sealed for the winter. This one step goes a long way to eliminating drafts in the home and is one of the major reasons that winterization of your air conditioner is so important. By keeping the cold air out, you improve the efficiency of your furnace during the cold winter months, saving you money on your utilities.
Another great benefit of winterizing your HVAC unit is that it improves the longevity of the equipment. Although central air conditioners are quite hardy, there are a few key components which do not respond well to the cold. Furthermore, there are few machines in existence that are not adversely affected when ice collects on the components. A few simple winterization steps ensures that the unit is well protected from snow and other wintry precipitation, and is one of the simple things that can be done to ensure that your air conditioning unit continues to function at peak performance for years on end.
Winterizing your HVAC unit also presents a great opportunity to clean it and the surrounding area of fall leaves and other debris. This improves the look of your home and also helps to protect your system from degradation or breakage. Debris can hide damage done to the unit already, clog the unit, and promote rust. Furthermore, a clean area makes other winterization projects that much easier.
A properly winterized HVAC unit goes a long way toward preventing some HVAC issues. By keeping water and debris out of the air conditioning unit, rust damage, clogs, and other such issues are eliminated. Likewise, covering the unit protects it from ice damage and keeps the unit reasonably well insulated from wind and snow. Additionally, by cutting the power supply to the air conditioning unit, you save money on your electricity bill during the winter. Not only does cutting the power supply ensure that you never accidentally turn on the air conditioning during the winter, but it also prevents the HVAC unit from leaching small amounts of electricity from the circuits. Stopping this standby usage could shave a few dollars off of your electricity bill.
There are many good reasons to winterize your HVAC unit, but perhaps the best reason is that it is a part of the standard seasonal maintenance of your HVAC system. By keeping up on seasonal maintenance, you maximize the lifespan of your HVAC unit.