The winter has been long and hard on our homes. Even the quality products and systems that we built your home with will need some maintenance. One of the systems is your HVAC system. The HVAC system cools and heats your home. Maintaining and servicing the HVAC system will keep it running correctly, extend the life of the system and will in turn keep your utility bills in check.
Some of the service can be done yourself. You can change the filter in the unit inside your home. You can also run water down the condensation pipe that runs to the floor drain in your basement. You may also easily clean debris from around the unit on the exterior of your home. This will allow the unit to “breath” and work more efficiently.
Filters can be changed by simply unscrewing two thumb knobs towards the bottom of the unit, pulling out the old filter and replacing it with a new one. It is a good idea to shut off the circuit breaker located on the top of the unit before you do this. Shutting off the circuit breaker will do two things.
First it will keep you safe while you are servicing your unit. It will also keep the fan of the unit from turning on while you are trying to change the filter. If the fan is running it will put air pressure on the filter and make it harder to pull out. Before you make a trip to the store to purchase a filter, pull the old one out and verify its size. It should be marked on the filter. It may also be marked on the cover. There are a lot of different sizes of filters and the sizes may only very by a half inch. It makes it difficult to just take a look and guess when you go to the store.
When you replace the filter make sure that you hook it on the metal tabs on the cover before you slide it back into the unit. Hooking the filter will allow you to easily slide it out the next time you change it. You also want to see if the filter is directional, meaning that the filter only works with the air flowing through it in a specific direction.
When sliding the filter into the unit, slide it in slowly. Do not force it and bend it. If it doesn’t fit like you think it should, verify that you purchased the correct size one more time. If your filter size is correct, try gently moving it back and forth while you slide it in. Sometimes it just takes a little patience.
When it is really hot outside and you are cooling your home, your system will create condensation. Condensation is like water or moisture. We have all seen it in the spring and summer outside. As the condensation accumulates, it will drip down to a pan at the bottom of your unit in the inside of your home.
Your unit has a white PVC pipe that allows the condensation to drain out of the unit into a floor drain in your basement. Sometimes the condensation pipe will clog up with dust or calcification from the hard water we have in our area. If the condensation pipe clogs up, the condensation will accumulate and overflow the pan at the bottom of your unit. It will make a little mess. The easiest way to protect your unit and home from this it to pour a little warm water down the pipe and make sure that it is free of debris and flowing properly before the summer temperatures are here.
A side note, putting water in the floor drain of your basement during the winter will keep the p-trap of the drain from becoming dry and allowing sewer smell to work it’s way up the drain.
The unit outside of your home can be easily maintained by clearing any debris that happen to be around it. You can also hose out the coils with a garden hose. Cleaning out the unit with a garden hose is a little tricky. You may want to call Jerry’s Sheet Metal in Grand Island, Nebraska to help. Their phone number is 308-384-2881.
If you try to do it yourself, make sure that you first cut the power form the unit by turning off the circuit breaker in your home and also pulling the disconnect on the exterior of your home by the unit. When you hose out your unit use low water pressure, you will not want to bend any fins or metal filters on the unit. Bending the fins or filters will hinder the air flow.
Finally you want to push water from the inside of the cooling unit to the outside of the unit. You want to push the dust and dirt back out not deeper into the unit. Again, this may be a project that you need help with. Give Jerry’s Sheet Metal a call, they are awesome people.
If you ever have any questions about your home, the products that we used to build your home or its systems don’t hesitate to give Thriv’ Construction a call. We are always here to help. We can be reached at 308-379-1482 or emailed at [email protected].