Even though summer is currently in full swing, the fall and winter months will be here before you know it. So, naturally, that means snow , ice, and chilling weather.
Is your home prepared for the harsh winters or blistering sun? If not, then you’ve likely had a hot day here recently. Make sure your home is ready for the weather by staying up to date with your HVAC system! Keeping your home at comfortable temperatures during all seasons is vital for your well-being and comfort.
Residents in the Reading, Massachusetts area, are no strangers to the summer or winter seasons. Knowing the type of area you live in can help you gauge the weather to know what to expect for the upcoming months.
In addition, your heating and air conditioning unit is responsible for making sure your homes are set on comfortable temperatures throughout all seasons of the year. No one wants to be in their own home sweating uncontrollably or relying on their layers of clothes to keep them warm.
For the most part, Reading, MA, sees sturdy weather. However, the summer months typically peak at 80 degrees, with last year being an exception. The colder months can sometimes reach below 10 degrees. With that being said, you should have a heating and air conditioning unit you trust not to make it through the average weather but is also prepared for those extreme cases where the temperatures are hotter or lower than they have ever been.
Have your energy bills gone up lately? Do you notice more dust in your home? Are there any odd sounds or smells coming from your central air unit?
If you’ve noticed all or any of these changes, then you may be facing time to update your home’s heating and cooling system.
These are all signs that your system is outdated, but if you can’t remember the last time your system was replaced, that could be another sign it’s time to upgrade. HVAC units are not meant to be replaced frequently. They are intended to last up to 30 years (especially if you keep up its maintenance).
HVAC systems that are older than 25 years are due for an upgrade. The older your system gets, the more problems it may start to have and become less energy-efficient—for instance, those increased energy bills. If you have been paying more money lately for energy, this could be because of your HVAC. If your HVAC is getting old and using more energy to heat or cool your home, this means it’s wearing out. Modern systems are built to keep its performance at a tremendous energy-efficient level and not use more energy than it needs.
The increase in energy usage can also mean your home is experiencing uneven temperatures. If your home is abnormally hot or cold, this could also indicate that it’s time to get a new unit.
To best determine the overall standing of your system, have a technician over to observe it, especially if you’ve noticed weird sounds or smells. They are best at identifying any problems or wearing issues that can warrant a new system for better performance. However, you don’t want to wait until it’s too late!
If it’s time for you to repair your system, don’t automatically assume the only options for your older furnace are central air or gas. There are ductless mini-splits to consider, too!
A ductless system is perfect for your heating and cooling needs if you are looking for a cost-reduction solution. Ductless systems work differently than traditional central air furnaces because they are fitted for specific rooms.
Ductless heating and air systems are boxes that are installed onto walls in certain rooms you want to be controlled. With a ductless system, you do not need to worry about installing one in every room. Instead, these smaller systems heat or cool the areas of our home that need it most, and you can have both heat and air going at once.
Instead of a central ac unit that heats or cools the entire house at once, you get to be in control with a ductless system. You can heat your living while cooling your bedroom at the same time if that’s what you prefer.
These systems also do not need the use of your air ducts that a typical HVAC system would. If you have recently added onto your home, like a garage or office space, these are perfect for those additions and are a quick solution to your air needs.
A ductless mini-split is also highly energy efficient. Homeowners with ductless systems see a 30% decrease in the amount of energy they use since smaller systems are not trying to set a specific temperature to your entire house.
However, these systems are much more pricey to install than a standard central air unit, but they will save you money on the back end with less amount of energy not being used. If you would like to learn more about using ductless systems in your home, consult with your heating and plumbing professional to know if these systems are suitable for you.
When you upgrade your heating and cooling system, you need to perform maintenance on it every now and then to ensure longevity and that its performance stays excellent. However, there are little things you can do yourself that do not require the help of a technician, although a technician should still drop by.
To ensure the quality of your new heating and cooling system is running properly, you should have a technician perform an inspection of your system twice a year. Inspecting before the big summer and winter months is a great way to be prepared for the upcoming weather. In addition, your technician can spot any leaks in your ductwork or functions that need to be turned/repaired before you’re at the peak of a season and something breaks down in your system.
While your technician is over, you can have them clean the outside compressor or do it yourself. To clean the outdoor compressor, you will need to shut off the power first since you will be spraying it down with a hose. Once the power is off, clean around the outdoor unit and get rid of any debris or items from outside that have blown into the fans or around the unit. You may need to bring a shop vac with you to vacuum it out.
Next, you will need to remove the outer covers to clean the fins and coils. Spray the unit down with your water hose before applying the coil cleaner and letting that sit for 15 to 20 minutes. Once the coil cleaner has had a chance to sit, spray it off with the hose before reattaching the covers and turning on the power once again.
You can do other maintenance things for your HVAC unit inside to replace the air filters and vacuum out the ducts. These can be done simultaneously since you have perfect access to your ducts once you remove your air filters.
Your air filters should be replaced every three to six months to keep the air quality of your home as pure as it can be. In addition, since your ac unit is bringing in air from the outside, your filters need to be cleaned, so they do not allow harmful pollutants to sneak by or back up your system.
If you forget to change your air filters, you could have ice develop on your coils since the air will not filter into your home properly. In addition, dust build-up can happen when your filters are not changed frequently since the air will not be as clean.
While you are replacing your filters, use the hose from your vacuum to extract any dust or build-up that has occurred inside the ducts to prevent from breathing in these pollutants. Also, check to see if there are any leaks or broken pieces in your ductwork while vacuuming them out since leaks can be another factor for increased energy usage.
When you are looking for a new unit, there are a few things to keep in mind so you do not end up with a unit that will need to be replaced quickly. First, you should look for experts in the Reading area to help you find the unit you need. Second, while you are looking for a company to work with, stay away from companies who are trying to push their line of ac units into your home. These will likely not be as effective as a leading brand will be.
Your next heating and cooling system should have a high SEER rating, which will indicate how energy-efficient it will be during all the seasons. A higher SEER rating means higher energy efficiency and a lower/consistent energy bill coming in every month. The company you decide to work with can help you find the right system for your house to ensure proper energy usage and comfortable temperatures.
If you are looking to update your home heating and air conditioning, we can help! We’re the experts at 128 Plumbing, who have been helping Reading, Massachusetts, residents for the last 29 years.
We know that your home comfort and air quality are critical; that’s why we are always here to give our clients honest advice about their current systems and the kind of update they need for their homes.
Don’t wait for the hot months or freezing snow to know you need to update your HVAC unit. Instead, give us a call today at 781-670-3261 to hear about how we can help you with your system upgrade today!