How to Prepare Your Home HVAC System for the Warmer Season

Season changes in Calgary, Alberta. It is a fact of life. We learn to adapt to these seasonal changes in the environment because it is us who suffer if we don’t. Fortunately, modern technology has made it easier for us to make these transitions.

Our home is full of gadgets that make life such a breeze for us but it comes at a price. You shell out money to purchase these items. Examples of these staples are home and cooling systems that maintain a sense of normalcy in our homes whether it is freezing or scorching hot outside.

With the summer fast approaching, it is time to do a reality check and find out if your home is ready for the temperature spikes that are fast approaching. And since it is still technically spring, now is the perfect time to do a quick check of your home HVAC system.

The arrival of a new season can be an exciting time. Homeowners may have renewed vigor to start home renovation projects or even tackle some cleaning and organization tasks. Before the weather starts to warm up too much, homeowners may want to evaluate their home cooling needs and ensure that all equipment is in good working order.

Spring air conditioning inspections and tune-ups are essential steps in system performance. Homeowners should not take for granted that a system that performed optimally last year will do so this year when temperatures climb. Various factors, including weather damage, dust and grime, mechanical wear and tear, and even rodent or insect infestations, can compromise HVAC systems. Since HVAC systems have so many moving parts, a thorough inspection of such systems can save headaches and money down the road.

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Do not put off things for later when you have the time to do it today. You may not like the idea of having to do all the nitty-gritty stuff in checking every square inch of your home to ensure you and your family stays cool and comfy in the coming warm winter months but it is the only way to go. You can always hire an HVAC expert to help you out but you always start with the decision to act on it.

You need to start NOW considering how many things must be checked at once. Not only your air conditioning system but also the pipes if you use one and so much more.

Keep the cold air in and the heat out. That’s what you must do.

First things first

Your first defense against the heat starts at your own front door.

Weatherstripping is vital to keeping the cool air in and the warm air out. Check door frames and around windows to root out air leaks and use caulk to fill where needed.

Keep that air flowing

Proper air conditioning maintenance can keep your temperature and your electric bill down during the summer.

It’s important to replace your air filters at least every two months and have your air conditioner serviced at the start of the season.

If you cool your home with window units, make sure to check the seal between the unit and the window is intact.

Take advantage of a cool breeze

In the early days of summer, when temperatures at night dip into the 70s, consider opening your windows if possible to allow for natural ventilation.

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While your home cooling system offers you the most comfort when the heat is almost unbearable, there are actually a lot of ways you can cool down without turning the cooling thermostat higher. If you don’t feel like doing anything at all, then, by all means, turn on the air conditioning and observe some of the tips mentioned above on how to boost cooling efficiency.

Cooling costs are always at the back of a homeowner’s mind even if you can’t resist reveling in the comfort offered by your home AC. It does not mean you have to pay more in order to save your sanity from the scorching heat of the summer sun. The Inquirer shared a few tips on how you can stay cool but still manage to reduce cooling costs this summer.

Raise the thermostat when at home and turn it up when leaving: Customers can save on annual cooling costs for each degree the temperature is increased in their home during the hot summer months. Set the thermostat to 78 degrees when at home, health permitting. Turn it up to 85 degrees when not at home.

Check air filters once a month: Heating and cooling consume the most energy in the average home — up to 50 percent of total home energy use. Dirty filters cause your system to work harder to keep the area cool, wasting energy and money.

Consider purchasing a smart thermostat for your home: Through PG&E’s Smart Thermostat Rebate, customers receive a $50 rebate on the purchase of new smart thermostat to help save on home heating and cooling costs. Visit Marketplace compare and shop for qualifying ENERGY STAR® models.

Maintain your air conditioner: Customers can lower their monthly energy bill by keeping air conditioning equipment working at top efficiency. PG&E’s AC Quality Care Program offers a free AC assessment ahead of summer and list of available AC-related rebates.

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Knowing that seasonal changes can take its toll on your home HVAC system, it is but a must to get the system checked, cleaned, or fixed before the peak season even comes. If you aren’t well versed in this field, there are countless cooling contractors who can do the job for you at a reasonable price.

As you’ve also probably read in the articles, the AC isn’t the only thing that can keep you feel cool in the midst of summer. Taking advantage of the breeze and staying under the shade is sometimes enough to help you pass the hours. You can also use a fan if you want more air. Fans don’t eat up as much energy as most cooling systems do. Avoid staying in places with no ventilation like rooms with no windows or even in the kitchen where the heat coming from the stove or grill can drive you mad.

And lastly, there are energy conservation tips you can try if you really can’t resist turning on the PC for hours during the day, or maybe even in the night.