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HVAC Maintenance Tips for Homeowners

If you have an HVAC system, which means a heating and/or air conditioning system, then it’s important to keep that maintained. Otherwise, you can miss problems that are easy to fix but can become bigger issues down the road. Maintenance also keeps your HVAC system running as smoothly as possible, which means that there’s no extra wear and tear on the system and that it runs as efficiently as possible. This saves you money in repairs and energy costs. Interested but not sure how to maintain your HVAC system? Here are some tips.

Change Your Filters

Some people say that you should change your filters every month, while others say that every 90 days is acceptable. The truth is, it depends on your system and on how often you use it. Look in the manufacturer’s records and see what they recommend. If there a range, like 30 to 90 days, replace at the short end of the range when you’re using the system every day and at the longer end when you are using it rarely.

Check Your Air Ducts

Turn your system on and make sure that air is flowing out of all of the ducts in your home. You should be able to tell simply by passing a hand over the duct. If there’s no air coming out, make sure that the duct is open. If there is less air coming out in some places than in others, it might be time to have an HVAC professional come out and take a look at your ducts.

Check for Obstructions

If you have outdoor units, like air conditioners, check around them to make sure that nothing is obstructing the flow of air into the unit. You may want to open the unit and clean out any dust or debris you find inside of it. This can go far towards helping your unit function as efficiently as possible. Check your air intake vents in the house, too. Make sure that they are as open as possible to fresh air. Otherwise, your system will have to work too hard to get the air it needs to heat or cool your house.

Keep Critters Out

Some small animals and bugs like to get inside your heating or cooling system because it helps them regulate their own temperatures. If you find evidence of something living in your HVAC system, take whatever steps are necessary to evict them. You may need to use sprays, call exterminators, or call in HVAC professionals to get rid of the problem. These creatures need to go, though, because they can cause all sorts of damage to the system and its components.

It’s also a good idea to call in a professional to have them look at your system once or twice a year. At Service First Pros, we have experienced HVAC technicians standing by, ready to help you out when you need it. We’ll find a time that’s convenient for you, then send someone over to help you maintain your system.

Ways to Raise or Lower Your Home’s Humidity

Is the humidity in your home off? Maybe it’s way too humid inside, or maybe you’d like a little more moisture in the air. No matter what you need, there are ways to change the humidity in your home so you can be comfortable there.

One way to change your home’s humidity is to install a system-wide humidifier or dehumidifier, depending on what you need. This can help inject moisture into your air or remove extra moisture from it. However, these systems can be expensive and require consistent maintenance to keep them running. If you aren’t quite ready to commit to another home system but you’d like to change your humidity, keep reading.

How to Raise Humidity

There are a few effective ways to raise the humidity in your home.

  • Use a vaporizer, cool steam machine, or even a single room humidifier. This can raise the humidity in your local space, which can help you breathe easier.
  • Vent your dryer indoors. This releases warm, moist air into your home, which can raise the humidity, especially around the dryer area.
  • Air dry your clothes inside. If you have wet clothes, hang them up to dry in the area where you want more humidity. As they dry, they should release moisture into the air.
  • Boil water on your stove. As the water boils, it will release moisture, making your air more humid.
  • Get some houseplants. Plants continuously release moisture into the air, raising humidity levels slightly. The more plants you have, the higher your indoor humidity levels will be.
  • Cook at home. Anytime you cook food, it releases moisture into your air, raising humidity levels.

How to Lower Humidity

If you need to lower your indoor humidity levels, you can do that, too.

  • Run your heater or air conditioner. Both of these will dry out the air in your home because of the process used to make the air hot or cold.
  • Spread cat litter on pans around your house. You can use baking pans or other broad, shallow pans. The litter will absorb moisture in the air, lowering ambient humidity levels.
  • Take short, cool showers. This will help ensure that showering does not add to the moisture level already present in your house.
  • Use your kitchen exhaust fan. This will suck all of the moisture released by cooking food out of your home, so it doesn’t linger in the air.
  • Run fans. When you point the fan towards you, it can help the air feel less moist, even if it doesn’t remove much actual moisture.
  • Clean your air and furnace filters. When these get clogged, your air can get more humid. Keeping them clean makes them more efficient in removing unwanted moisture.

If these ideas don’t work for you and you’re interested in discussing a home humidifying system, give us a call. We’ll send out a Service First Pros HVAC expert to get your home at the right humidity level for you and your family.

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