There are always a handful of days between seasons that are wonderful in South Carolina. Neither too hot nor too cold, they are days we open the windows and relish the fresh air. These between season days are also a good time to inspect your HVAC system to identify issues that may need attention. Now that Fall and Winter are in sight, take a few minutes to inspect your thermostat, vents, and HVAC unit to see if you are prepared for days when home heating is required.
If you haven't run your HVAC in a while, take a moment to check and replace HVAC air filters around your house. As long as no one suffers from severe allergies, most homes are fine with a standard 1" pleated or non-pleated air filter. As long as they are changed when they are dirty, the standard air filter does a good job of separating impurities and particulates from the air you breeze.
It is important to stress that filters should be changed regularly. The frequency really depends on your home, its occupants, and your lifestyle (whether you have pets, kids, etc).
Now that your air filters are checked, take a look at your thermostat. Test your heat by turning the setting from Auto to Heat. See if your outdoor unit turns on and then if you notice warm air from the vents. If nothing happens within 30 minutes or an hour, you may need to call a professional to take a look at your system.
Around this time of year we get calls of a faint "burning smell." This can be a common experience when your heat is turned on after being unused for most of the year. Typically, this smell is just dust heating up after it has accumulated during the warmer months. The burning smell should go away. If it persists, or more importantly, if it smells like gas or oil, call a professional.
In Myrtle Beach, most residential HVAC condensers are located outside your home. Remove debris and dirt from around your HVAC unit. It's perfectly fine to use a hose to spray out anything lodged around the fan or housing.
As your HVAC runs, inspect it with all of your senses. Listen for unusual sounds and rattlings, observe the fan and visible parts, and take note of any sensory details that just don't seem right. These can provide clues to an HVAC professional and help them troubleshoot before they even arrive at your home.
Cooper Mechanical Services encourages homeowners to invest in their HVAC system with regular service and cleaning. Our Clean and Service agreements help homeowners avoid some of the large repair costs that can surprise homeowners in the middle of winter or summer. Regular maintenance also extends the life of your unit.