Just like your car, your HVAC system operates all year round to maintain good indoor air quality and comfortable air temperature levels in your home.
While an HVAC system can last anywhere between 12 to 15 years, with such frequent use, your HVAC system can easily break down, requiring a replacement or immediate repair.
A broken HVAC system can lead to poor indoor air quality and costly and time-consuming repairs.
Fortunately, there are many proven ways to keep your air conditioning system always working at its best and extending its lifespan.
The most effective way to ensure your air conditioner works properly is by replacing the filters with more efficient MERV 13 filters.
This ensures your system doesn’t work too hard to keep your indoor air clean and at ideal temperatures, helping reduce your energy costs and prevent expensive emergency repairs.
Apart from replacing dirty and worn filters, here are other effective ways you can extend the lifespan of your HVAC system:
1. Schedule Maintenance Twice a Year
The best way to extend the life of your HVAC system is through preventative maintenance. Twice every year, you should have your HVAC system inspected, tuned, and cleaned by a local HVAC professional.
Your technician will perform a thorough inspection of your HVAC system by checking the heat exchange for wear and cracks, the refrigerant levels, and lubricating all moving parts.
They will replace filters and thoroughly clean and clear dirt and debris buildup on the drain tube and condenser coil.
Any other tune-up that can make your system work more efficiently, safer, and last longer will be performed during your routine maintenance.
It’s always best to schedule your air conditioner maintenance in spring and furnace service in late summer to avoid emergency repairs when you need your HVAC system the most. You can schedule your AC maintenance on this webpage.
2. Check on Your Condenser
While your air conditioner’s condenser is designed strong and durable enough to withstand the elements, it’s still prone to damage from hail and debris from severe storms.
As such, it’s advisable to check your condenser for signs of wear and damage, especially after a major storm. Also, remove any vines, grass, and weeds that have grown around the condenser.
Also, remove any leaves that might have accumulated around the fins and vacuum the condenser interior to remove dirt obstructing airflow.
3. Get a Smart Thermostat
Investing in a smart thermostat is another excellent way to prolong your HVAC system’s service life. The latest thermostat can analyze your HVAC system’s schedule, allowing them to automatically adjust the settings for energy-efficient operation without any human intervention.
Smart thermostats also allow you to control your HVAC unit virtually using your smartphone or tablet. The ability to conveniently and easily adjust the settings of your system from any location can help reduce its workload and avoid overworking it, especially when there’s no one at home. This way, you can extend its service life and save on your energy bills.
4. Use the “Auto” Fan Setting
Most HVAC systems come with two fan settings. One of them is the ‘auto’ setting that instructs the fan to start functioning only when the system is heating or cooling actively.
Use this setting to extend the life of your HVAC system. The other one is the ‘on’ setting that operates your fan continuously. Some systems are designed with dual-speed fans to ensure more energy-efficient heating and cooling cycles.
Using the on setting can be beneficial, especially if you suffer from respiratory conditions since it improves your indoor air quality by trapping more dust and other contaminants.
While running your HVAC fan continuously can help improve your indoor air quality, your filter can accumulate dirt more quickly and cause your system to overwork. This can lead to reduced efficiency and lifespan, especially if you don’t change the filters regularly.
5. Have Your Ducts Cleaned
Closed or blocked vents and ducts can make your HVAC system overwork, reducing its efficiency. Over time, your system could end up malfunctioning or breaking down completely, requiring costly repairs or a replacement.
Therefore, apart from changing your air filters regularly, you should have your ductwork cleaned yearly. While you can clean the ducts yourself, you risk damaging the ductwork if you don’t have the expertise or proper equipment.
Using the wrong tools could worsen the clog and easily block the ducts. Choosing a trusted company like Blair’s Air Conditioning & Heating to maintain your HVAC system will ensure its efficiency. It’s always best to have your ductwork and vents professionally cleaned.
6. Upgrade Your Insulation
How well your home is insulated can significantly impact your HVAC system’s efficiency. Ample attic insulation can help extend the life of your system by reducing the need to operate it continuously. That’s because the attic is the part of your home likely to lose heat and air.
So, be sure to upgrade your home’s attic insulation. Based on where you reside, you may also consider adding insulation in your basement and the wall cavities. You may also schedule an expert energy audit to identify areas in your home that require insulation the most.
Taking great care of your HVAC system is the best way to prolong its service life. And that includes practicing preventative maintenance such as replacing the filters regularly, scheduling HVAC tune-ups twice per year, and cleaning ductwork to ensure your HVAC unit works at optimum levels always.
Be sure also to clean the interior and exterior of your condenser, insulate your home’s attic, and upgrade to a smart thermostat to improve your system’s efficiency and increase its lifespan.