You may consider your air filter to be an unimportant issue, allowing it to go longer than its recommended time between changes. However, your filter plays a significant role in the performance of your HVAC system, protecting internal components of the equipment from efficiency and safety problems. Neglecting your filter could cost you a lot over time.
The Effect of Dirt on HVAC Systems
A dirty air filter can restrict airflow, leading to malfunctions like short-cycling, an issue in which the heating or cooling unit will turn on and off quickly. This can place stress on system components like your AC or heat pump compressor, posing the risk of an early need to replace your equipment. A dirty filter can also buckle under the weight of excess material, allowing open holes to facilitate the movement of unfiltered air over your equipment.
If dirt reaches the inside coils of your heat pump or air conditioner, it can mix with moisture to create a grimy layer over the area. This inhibits the heat transfer process that conditions the air in your home, leading to poor comfort levels and high energy bills. This also places stress on a system compressor.
Dirt building up on your furnace equipment can also lead to inefficient and unsafe operation. Residue on heat exchangers, sensors and burners can affect the performance of the system while also creating a greater risk of a heating fire. Heating is one of the leading causes of residential fires, and your family’s safety could be jeopardized by a dirty system. Dirty venting equipment can also be dangerous as this can allow the buildup of carbon monoxide in your home.
How to Clean Your HVAC System
One of the most important efforts you can make in air conditioner and heater maintenance is to be sure that your air filter is checked regularly and changed as needed. Start each heating and cooling season with a new filter, and check monthly to assess the need for a change. Your filter may indicate that it is good for a specific period of time, but you still need to do a visual inspection.
You should also schedule AC and heater maintenance prior to the onset of each cooling and heating season. Your HVAC professional will do a thorough inspection of your equipment to be sure that all components are in good working order. He will check for leaks, broken parts and loose fittings, making adjustments and repair recommendations as necessary. He will also clean relevant system components to ensure that optimum safety and efficiency levels are achieved.
Although colder weather is beginning to set in, it’s not too late to have heater maintenance completed in your Des Plaines, IL, home. The team at Gartner HVAC is able to provide a system inspection with a thorough cleaning of your equipment. We can also provide support for energy efficiency or indoor air quality concerns related to your heating equipment. Contact our customer service representatives to schedule an appointment today.