HVAC System Basics for New Homeowners

Congratulations on purchasing your first home! You are no doubt pleased with your investment, although you may feel weighed down by all these new responsibilities. Now that you’re the homeowner, not the renter, it’s your job to care for all your home’s appliances and utility equipment, like the heating and cooling equipment.

If the only interaction you’ve ever had with a furnace or air conditioner is to adjust the thermostat, you have more to learn. Try these HVAC system basics for first-time homeowners.

Know the Parts of an HVAC System

HVAC stands for heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Unless you live in an idyllic climate, your new home most likely has this system to keep you warm in the winter and cool throughout the summer. Here are the key parts of an HVAC system:

  • Comfort systems, such as an air conditioner, air-source heat pump, furnace, boiler, geothermal heat pump or ductless mini-split, to name a few choices.
  • Ductwork fixed to return and supply registers with regards to air-forced systems such as ACs, heat pumps and furnaces.
  • Radiators or hot water distribution systems in the case of boilers.
  • Indoor air quality solutions, like an air filter, whole-house humidifier, whole-house dehumidifier, air purifier or energy-recovery ventilator.
  • Thermostat for indoor temperature control.

Recognize the Importance of Preventive Maintenance

When you were a renter, a landlord probably handled any HVAC maintenance tasks such as replacing the air filter. They may or may not have foot the bill for comprehensive heating and cooling inspections.

Now that you’re taking care of things, you can offer preventive maintenance the attention it deserves. First, perform these do-it-yourself HVAC maintenance tasks:

  • Replace the air filter every 30 to 90 days.
  • Gently hose down the outdoor unit and cut back vegetation to enhance airflow.
  • Keep all air registers open to sustain proper system balance.

Then, request yearly maintenance for each HVAC unit. Only a trained professional can perform in-depth tasks like cleaning the furnace burners, recharging the AC refrigerant and identifying air leaks in the ductwork. Expect the following perks when you get a professional to inspect your system every year:

  • Energy savings
  • Fewer breakdowns
  • More affordable repair bills
  • Superior home comfort
  • Extended system life span
  • Peace of mind

Look Out for Signs of Trouble

Repairing and replacing the HVAC system is the homeowner’s responsibility. Watch for these clues that it’s time to hire a heating and cooling specialist:

  • Excess noise: Don’t ignore a screeching, rattling, clanking or banging sound. It can be a cry for help from your home's furnace or air conditioner.
  • Comfort or air quality trouble: Erratic temperatures, high or low humidity, stale rooms and moldy odors are routinely tied to malfunctioning HVAC equipment.
  • Low energy efficiency: Are your bills suddenly increasing? This could mean your heating and cooling system isn’t working properly.
  • Old age: Like all mechanical utilities, HVAC systems inevitably wear out. The typical life span of a furnace or boiler is 15 years, while air conditioners and heat pumps run around a decade.

Learn More About the HVAC Replacement Process

If your damaged furnace or air conditioner can’t be fixed, you’ll need to replace it with an HVAC specialist's help. Here’s how it works:

  • Describe the problem to the technician and allow them to investigate it more in-depth.
  • The tech should diagnose the problem and recommend possible solutions. A repair could be viable, but according to the unit’s condition and age, a replacement can be more cost-effective.
  • You can obtain numerous opinions and estimates from assorted contractors if you want.
  • When you call Winnipeg Supply Service Experts, a residential sales consultant will determine what HVAC system, brand, fuel type and efficiency rating is perfect for you.
  • The tech will provide a written estimate outlining the work needed, the equipment they’ll install and the total price. You might also receive details about warranty coverage, service plans and financing options.
  • Schedule the installation after you pick what system you want. Your contractor will complete everything, including hauling away the old equipment for proper disposal.
  • The sales consultant should review the new system with you, detailing how to use it, addressing any questions and providing all the needed documentation.

Call Winnipeg Supply Service Experts

If you have questions about these HVAC system basics, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Winnipeg Supply Service Experts. We emphasize customer education to help you make an informed decision about your heating and cooling system. Our team is experienced in a full array of HVAC services, so give us a call for everything from furnace maintenance to AC repair to heat pump installation. For more information or to ask for an estimate, please get in touch with your local Winnipeg Supply Service Experts office today.

 

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