How to prep your HVAC system for cold winter weather

If you enjoy fall weather, take the time to make sure your home is equipped to handle the cold months ahead.

Following these steps will make winter more comfortable and energy efficient:

Clean your air filters monthly. Dirty filters make HVAC equipment work harder and cause more wear and tear on your system. They also increase your energy bill and reduce indoor air quality.

To compare the annual fuel consumption of your heating system with newer models. If it’s lower than 13, you may want to consider a new, more efficient system.

Remember that the higher the rating, the less energy wasted for a smaller carbon footprint. Be sure to choose equipment with the ENERGY STAR logo. High-efficiency systems reduce your impact on the environment and can also save you money. You may also qualify for a federal tax credit if you select an eligible model.

Use a humidifier during the colder months. Not only does it add moisture to your home, it can actually make it warmer. In turn, you’re more likely to turn your thermostat down, saving you money and using less energy.

Check and maintain your insulation. Poorly insulated walls, floors, attics, basements and crawl spaces dissipate heat and can also lead to moisture imbalance. Adding weatherstripping and caulk around windows and doors can also go a long way in improving your home’s insulation.

Lower your thermostat. Keeping your thermostat five degrees cooler can lower your heating bills without affecting the comfort of your home. Install a programmable thermostat to control the temperature.

Clean the oven cavity. Do not keep chemicals or cleaning products near your stove and do not keep anything next to it that could impede ventilation. Keep vents and returns clear of obstructions.

Do not place carpet over vents, place furniture over or in front of it, or restrict airflow.

Have a technician tune your HVAC system for the season so that everything runs efficiently before the temperature drops.

Even the most efficient system can suffer if not properly maintained. Ensure your HVAC equipment is installed and maintained by a North American Technician Excellence (NATE) certified HVAC technician as they have demonstrated their knowledge of today’s increasingly sophisticated heating and cooling systems by passing a nationally recognized test ​which is developed and supported by all segments of the industry.

Working with a NATE-certified technician translates to longer life for your HVAC equipment, greater energy efficiency, and fewer callbacks and warranty returns. To find a NATE certified contractor and for more HVAC tips and insights, visit: https://www.natex.org.

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