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Serving the Los Angeles Area  (818) 403-3775

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Check out our blogs to learn about the newest trends in the HVAC industry and get insight from the experts about how to best invest in and care for your home’s HVAC system.

Oct 6, 2022

Your Complete HVAC Maintenance Checklist

HVAC technician with red toolbox

From cleaning the kitchen to taking out the garbage, a bit of regular upkeep is an important part of keeping your home clean and functioning as it should. Among all the consistent daily tasks that go into maintaining your household, it’s no wonder many homeowners tend to neglect their HVAC system.

This is likely because, like our plumbing or electrical systems, your HVAC system gets taken for granted until something goes wrong. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t things you can be doing throughout the year to ensure it functions reliably and the air quality remains healthy. There are simple tasks you should do every 2-3 months, but seasonal inspections are the most important part of maintaining your HVAC system. Certain parts of proper HVAC maintenance require specialized equipment and expertise, so you want to trust the professionals to take care of them. That way, you can rest assured the job is done properly and you avoid causing any significant damage.

Metal corrosion

What Are Common HVAC Problems?

There’s a good chance that you’re going to experience problems with your HVAC system at some point. Preventative maintenance is key, but it can be helpful to know what you might be dealing with if something goes wrong:

  • Leaks ­– Because of the connector and drain lines, there’s always a chance that your HVAC system will develop a leak. Whether this is due to something detaching or general wear and tear, this problem can put more pressure on your HVAC system than it should and cause water damage in the area of the leak.
  • Corrosion – An HVAC system deals with refrigerant which turns from a liquid into a gas. Unfortunately, this creates the potential for corrosion, which can have a dire impact on your AC system. Identifying early warning signs of corrosion can help prevent system shutdowns and major repair costs.
  • Mechanical Wear & Tear – The smooth operation of the mechanical components in your HVAC system are what allows it to function reliably. Internal parts like the belts and bearings can stretch out or wear down over time, which can lead to air flow issues and overheating. Be sure to schedule regular, professional maintenance visits so you can avoid this!
  • Tripped Breakers – If you’ve experienced a tripped breaker, it could have something to do with the blower on your HVAC system. When the airflow in your system is blocked, the blower has to work that much harder to push it through. Issues like a duct leak, closed registers, or dirty coils can lead to this issue.
  • Dirt & Debris – Your indoor air quality can be significantly impacted by buildups of dirt and debris in your vents and ducts. Such pollutants in the air can create foul odors and worst of all, pose a risk to the health of you and your loved ones. In addition, dirty air filters will not enable your HVAC to work as it should, leading to system breakdowns.
Wall of assorted tools

Why Should You Do HVAC Maintenance?

As a homeowner, you are obligated to take care of a lot of different tasks all across your home to keep it clean and functional. The HVAC industry is a specialized field, so many homeowners know very little about the inner workings of their furnaces and AC units and just how much a bit of professional care and attention can benefit them. 

By scheduling regular HVAC maintenance visits, you can reduce the costs and headaches associated with your home’s climate control system.

Lower Utility Bills

An HVAC system that is taken care of and well-maintained doesn’t have to work so hard. If it’s operating at optimal efficiency, it won’t take as much energy to heat or cool your home. Month after month, this can lead to lower bill payments!

Less Repair

Even the best HVAC systems are going to experience problems sometimes. Fortunately, maintenance at regular intervals can help to remedy a lot of repair problems in their earliest and most affordable stages.

Avoid a Breakdown

Depending on the season, there are moments where heating or cooling your home are absolute necessities. Unfortunately, when your HVAC system has to work the hardest is often also when it is most likely to break down. If you are doing a bit of spring cleaning to prepare for the warmer months, it’s a good idea to add an HVAC maintenance visit to your yearly routine.

Improved Air Quality

Because an HVAC system uses an air filter to remove particles from the air, it is one of the most effective means of regulating air quality. When it’s cooling, your air conditioner should also regulate humidity. This means that it will automatically minimize the presence of mold, mildew, or bacteria in your home.

Extended Lifespan

Many of the hiccups that occur with an HVAC system will happen because maintenance is neglected. When little things go wrong, they will add up to big problems over time because, like any other system, a malfunction in one part often impacts the rest.

Your Home’s Safety

A system that’s not functioning effectively may mean air conditioner repairs are required. But sometimes, a unit that’s experiencing trouble can have more serious consequences. If your HVAC system experiences a short circuit, this could lead to a fire in your home. If you have two separate units for heating and cooling, there could be a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning associated with certain furnace issues. Though these are certainly rare situations, homeowners should never neglect warning signs that could potentially put their homes and loved ones in danger.

Daisy against blue sky

Spring/Summer HVAC Maintenance Checklist

With all that said, let’s take a look at all the specific parts of your HVAC system that require individual attention. You’ll notice we broke the checklist into two parts according to each season since your furnace and AC systems have their own distinct needs.

  • Replace air filters every 30-90 days
  • Clean the evaporator condensers and coils
  • Clear any clogs and drain lines to enable efficient air flow
  • Remove water from drain pans to avoid overflow
  • Replace any worn-out pulleys or belts
  • Inspect the entire HVAC system for dust, debris, or mold
  • Check the refrigerant charge for any issues like leakage
  • Make sure the thermostat is set correctly
  • Inspect all the connections for your HVAC system
  • Change the batteries
  • Inspect the electrical system
  • Ensure fan motors are functioning effectively
  • Look at blade and blowers to ensure airflow is optimized
  • Lubricate any moving parts on unit
  • Check the HVAC cabinet for any sign of leaks
  • Ensure the HVAC cabinet door is closed securely
  • Remove debris, dirt, and branches in and around the outside unit

Completion of an HVAC inspection for the spring and summer months ensures that your AC unit will continue to cool your home at optimal performance and keep the quality of your air healthy. It also makes it more likely that you won’t have to deal with additional issues before your next maintenance inspection.

Air filter

Fall/Winter HVAC Maintenance Checklist

It may seem like you can get away with doing a little less for your HVAC system with Southern California’s mild winters. However, though your furnace may not get as much use as colder parts of the country, sitting dormant for most of the year comes with its own set of potential issues.

Before winter rolls around, it’s important to ensure the fall HVAC maintenance checklist is complete so no issues arise over the cooler months:

  • Replace air filters every 30-90 days
  • Inspect the ignition burner assembly for any issues
  • Inspect all heating elements to ensure they are not damaged
  • Check the flue system and make sure it’s securely attached to the furnace
  • If you have a gas furnace, check for the gas pressure and the presence of any leaks
  • Remove water from drain pans to avoid overflow
  • Replace any worn-out pulleys or belts
  • Inspect the electrical system
  • Lubricate any moving parts on unit
  • Make sure the thermostat is set correctly
  • Inspect the heat pump

It’s important to be aware that what needs to be done will depend on your specific HVAC system. To ensure that yours is receiving the proper maintenance, you may want to rely on a local HVAC contractor to help!

HVAC maintenance checklist

Preventative Maintenance for Your HVAC System

Every HVAC system is different. That means that what will be required for it to be maintained will differ based on factors including:

  • Age
  • Condition
  • Size
  • Brand
  • Frequency of Use

How to Optimize Your HVAC System

Receiving proper air conditioner installation and completing the HVAC maintenance checklist throughout the year is key in maintaining peak performance. However, there are a few things you can do consistently to ensure you get the most from your system:

1. Invest in High-Quality Filters – As we’ve mentioned, your air filters should be changed every 30-90 days. A clean and quality filter will help to improve the efficacy of your unit. It may be a slightly higher investment in the short term, but it will save you money on reduced energy bills over time.

2. Clean Debris Around the Unit – Clearing debris, dirt, or branches that have gathered around your outdoor HVAC unit is important during seasonal maintenance. Be sure to check your unit regularly to ensure that there are at least two feet of clearance around it.

3. Check Refrigerant Lines – It’s easy for refrigerant lines in your HVAC system to get worn down or develop leaks. While they’re a part of the seasonal HVAC maintenance checklist, be sure to check them once a month. After all, they’re responsible for keeping your family comfortable.

4. Keep Your HVAC Unit Level – It might sound strange, but your HVAC unit will function optimally if it’s level. Because it’s an outdoor unit, there’s always a chance it can be slightly moved by wind or rain. Be sure to check it once every two to three months to ensure it’s as it should be.

5. Inspect Fan Blades – Fan blades are the type of thing that will be replaced during your seasonal HVAC inspections. However, they are something you may want to look at for signs of wear and tear every two to three months. If you’re noticing damage, you may need to reach out to an HVAC specialist sooner rather than later.

6. Pay Attention to Strange Smells and Noises – If you happen to notice any noises or a strange odor, this could point to an issue with your outdoor unit. It may be time to arrange an inspection if this issue appears.

7. Keep the Registers Open – Closing registers around your home may be a way to manage the airflow in certain areas. Unfortunately, this can put a lot of burden on your HVAC system since it will be working harder to achieve your set temperature. Be sure to leave most of your registers open so that your system doesn’t overwork itself unnecessarily.

Conclusion

HVAC maintenance doesn’t have to be complicated, but there are a few things you’ll want to do at the start of every season to ensure that yours is taken care of.

It might seem like a lot to replace the air filters and remove any worn-out elements, but it does mean your system will last longer. It can also make your system more efficient, which makes for lower utility bills over time!

Maintaining your HVAC system on your own, without the proper equipment or expertise, is not only a lot of time and effort but can even end up costing you if these tasks are not executed properly. So why not let the HVAC pros at Season Control check all the boxes for you?At Season Control, we have the experience and know-how to deal with all of your HVAC maintenance in Los Angeles. If you’re in need of a seasonal inspection or would like to begin a regular maintenance schedule, contact us today at (818) 403-3775 for our air-conditioned expertise!

References

https://www.davidleroyplumbing.com/blog/hvac-maintenance-checklist/

https://aristair.com/blog/the-complete-residential-hvac-preventative-maintenance-checklist/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2021/05/13/property-owners-hvac-preventative-maintenance-is-more-important-than-ever/?sh=6ddc5e72f338

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