How to Conduct a DIY HVAC Inspection
If there’s one thing sure to bring down your mood, it’s going to be your HVAC unit going out in the middle of summer. Learning how to perform a basic inspection of your HVAC unit will help keep it operational and may help avoid greater damage from building up over time.
Not only can it be expensive to fix or replace an HVAC unit, but it’s one of the most depended on appliances to keep the indoor temperature comfortable to live in. Unfortunately, unless something goes wrong, most homeowners push it to the back of their mind and don’t perform the necessary inspections to keep it running. As with other appliances, your HVAC unit will begin to deteriorate from the moment it’s installed, although most people do not run into any problems until a few years down the line. You can do your best to prevent any malfunctions by following these Reddi Services approved steps.
Check The Thermostat
Check to make sure that your thermostat is working as it should, starting by checking both preset temperatures for your heating and cooling. If necessary, open the thermostat and clean the inside with a q-tip.
Turn Off The Power
Walk out to your breaker box and look for the correct switch to shut off the power of your unit. On the outside, make sure to switch off the on/off switch. This is a very important step as you will need to remove some parts of the unit for access.
Remove Debris From HVAC Unit
Using a screwdriver and wrench, detach the fan cage from your unit and use a vacuum to remove any debris from the inside.
Clean And Repair The Fins
Take a hose and rinse down the fins from the inside of the unit. Be careful not to use a power washer as it can be too powerful and cause damage to the fins – the fins must be straight for air to flow properly through. Use a butter knife to carefully straighten the fins if necessary, then reattach the fan cage. If you have trouble cleaning the fins with a regular hose, you may need to use a specialized fin-cleaning spray.
Clear Area Around The Unit
The best rule of thumb is to keep a minimum of two-feet distance between your HVAC unit and any vegetation or other objects in your yard. Make sure your unit is not covered up, as rodents will quickly find a new home for themselves in your unit.
Level The Unit
Check to make sure your unit is leveled, as with time it may slowly shift out of place. If you find that it’s not leveled properly, invest in rot-resistant shims and prop up the necessary side.
Clean Evaporator Coil
On the inside of your unit you should find an evaporator coil door. Dust this off and spray it down with a no-rinse coil cleaner. After foaming up, you can use a small amount of bleach and hot water to clean it up.
Check Evaporator Drain
You may also notice while cleaning the evaporator coil door that the evaporator drain is clogged. This can lead to flooding, so use a wet/dry vacuum and clear out any debris that could be causing a blockage.
Replace Filters Regularly
A common source of HVAC problems stems from the filter. This filter traps debris from entering your HVAC unit, although if not replaced regularly can lead to further damages. Ideally the filter should be changed around every three months – sometimes even more frequently if you have any pets with fur in your home.
Inspect your ductwork wherever it is visible for any traces of water. If you find any leaks, simply patch up with duct tape. Also be sure to inspect the air vents around your home for traces of mold, debris, or rodent droppings.
Having Difficulties With Your HVAC Unit?
As with other costly repairs, your home system replacement is a serious investment. It can be unfortunate, but even new units will have a performance issue every once in a while. Reddi Services not only will come out for one-time services, but also offers our Reddi Planned Maintenance program that covers what many home warranty companies don’t. Give yourself peace of mind knowing your home and appliances are being well-kept. Call today to learn more and secure you home with our RPM program!