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How to Prepare Your HVAC System for a Winter Storm

Prepare Your HVAC System for a Winter Storm

Before our next big winter storm, ensure your HVAC system won’t leave you in the cold. Follow the below tips.

As we know, winter weather is unpredictable. When snow is in the forecast it’s hard know if it will be a light dusting or a complete blizzard in Western New York. To prepare your HVAC system for a winter storm ahead, you should ensure that it is in the best condition all winter long, because you just never know what each day will bring. Keeping your HVAC system prepared for a winter storm can help increase your energy efficiency, prevent the need for an emergency heating service call, and ensure that your family stays comfortable, even during the worst weather.

Before our next big winter storm, ensure your HVAC system won’t leave you in the cold. Follow the below tips.  

Tips to Prepare Your HVAC System for a Winter Storm

As the winter chill and cold slowly creep into Western New York, homeowners want to ensure that their HVAC unit runs optimally. Part of expecting severe weather means preparing your HVAC system for the winter weather ahead. Let’s get started.

Schedule a Furnace Tune-up and Inspection: The best thing you can do to prepare your HVAC system for a winter storm is to schedule a furnace tune-up and inspection. Furnace tune-ups help to prevent heating problems, boost energy efficiency, protect your system from unexpected costly repairs, and improve the overall heating operation of your unit. With a furnace tune-up the technician will take the time to run through the major components of your heating system and will clean, tighten, and lubricate them as needed. Your vents will be checked for blockages, the ignition and flame sensor will be tested, the heat exchanger will be inspected, furnace belts and fans are reviewed, blower and blower wheel are examined, and more to verify the overall performance of your heating unit and confirm it is in the best condition.

Inspect the Insulation: Your HVAC system can run more efficiently when you have your Western New York home’s insulation in check. Look for drafts around windows and doors, and seal up any air leaks that can let cold air in and hot air out. 9 out of 10 homes in U.S. are not sufficiently insulated, according to Energy Star. This means that the HVAC unit has to consume more energy and exert more to heat the home. At the same time, it also leads to poor indoor heating in snowy conditions. A properly insulated home can retain heated air better than one that is not sealed well and is drafty. If your heating unit needs to work too hard to keep up with the loss of heat, it can overwork and lead to an unexpected and undesirable breakdown.

Check and Clear Vents: Your HVAC system uses the vents throughout your home to disperse the hot air it is producing, if a vent or vents are closed or covered this can prevent proper airflow and lead to uneven heating and your HVAC system having to work overtime to keep your home at the desired temperature. Any time that your HVAC system works harder than it should, you put it at risk for potential issues. As you prepare your HVAC system for a winter storm, don’t neglect checking the vents and ensuring there are no clothes, furniture, or other items over them, and check them to make sure they are all open and working as anticipated.

Set Your Programmable Thermostat: We know that programmable thermostats can make a big difference in any home. If you don’t have a programmable thermostat, installing one before a winter storm is a good idea. Programmable thermostats are a great addition to any Western New York home, and are especially useful in the winter months as we face extreme temperature changes. With programmable settings, you can pre-define the temperatures at which the thermostat should run at specific hours. This has the added benefit of ensuring a more energy efficient operation of the furnace and can save you at least 10% a year on heating and cooling costs. Remember to keep your thermostat set at around 68°F during the winter days and drop it by 10 degrees when you sleep and are away.

Replace Air Filters: We can’t stress enough why changing your Western New York home’s air filter is important. Not only should you change your air filter before the next big winter storm, you should have extras handy. When the temperatures are colder, your HVAC system will run more and your filters will fill up much faster than normal. If a filter is clogged and not replaced as needed, it can affect the performance of the HVAC system and consume more energy. This can be particularly significant in chilly temperatures when you need good indoor heating. If there are forecasts of a winter storm, it is a good idea to inspect the air filters and replace them, if needed. Even if you are strict about replacing your air filters on a regular basis, take the time to complete this step before the snow hits the ground.

Whether you love the snow or are not a fan, everyone wants heat in their home when it is blistery cold outside. You need to prepare your HVAC system for a winter storm and keep it up to par all winter long.

At Duffett Plumbing, Heating & AC, our goal is to keep your home comfortable all year round. Duffett Plumbing, Heating & AC is your team for heating repair, maintenance, and installation services here in Hamburg and Erie County.

When your heater quits on you, call us for 24/7 heating repair. No matter what type of heating system—furnace, boiler, ductless, or hybrid unit—your home has, our technicians can get it running again.

We’re proud to offer these heating services in Hamburg, NY: Heating Repair, Heating Tune-Up, New Heating Systems.