You should have your HVAC system inspected at least twice a year. It is a good idea to have your system inspected in the spring, and then again in the summer. This allows you to have your system checked right before two times of year when you use it most. A semi-annual HVAC inspection can help you spot and take care of small maintenance issues before they develop into larger issues. Here is a quick guide to inspecting your HVAC system:

Start With The Filter

The first thing you need to do is inspect the filter that goes to your HVAC system. You should be able to easily pull out your filter and inspect it. Your filter should be free of dust and other debris. If your filter is really dusty, you need to clean it off. You can clean your filter by using a vacuum cleaner to remove all the debris, or you can rinse it off in your utility sink or outside with a hose. If you do rinse it off, allow it to dry completely before putting it back in place.

Ideally, you should clean your filter every month. This will keep the air you breath clean and debris free. You should also replace your air filter every six months or so. Your HVAC manual should include a recommendation for how often to change out your filter for your specific system.

Clean The Thermostat

Next, you need to clean your thermostat. Your thermostat can easily become clogged with dust over time. Remove the cover to your thermostat and use some q-tips or cotton swabs to get rid of any dust that has built up. 

Clean The Registers And Grills

Next, you need to check all of your registers and grills. If they are dusty or dirty, use your vacuum to remove most of the debris. Then, wipe them down with an all-purpose cleaning wipe. 

Try to open and shut your registers. If you have a difficult time operating the registers, spray the turning mechanism with a little lubricant. This should loosen them up enough so that they open and close effectively. 

You also need to make sure that your furniture is not blocking any of your vents; this will prevent your HVAC system from working effectively.

Inspect Your Ducts

After you clean your registers and grills, you need to inspect all of your ductwork. If your ductwork is not exposed, it will be located either inside of your basement or in your attic. You want to look for the following five things while inspecting your ducts:

  • Dents in your ducts
  • Tears in your ducts
  • Collapsed sections 
  • Peeling tape around the seams of your ducts
  • Loose fitting around the seams

If you notice any of the five issues, contact an HVAC contractor to come in and fix your ducts. These types of issues can affect the overall efficiency of your system. 

Inspect Your Air Conditioning Compressor

Finally, check the air compressor outside of your house. Make sure that it is not covered by shrubs or vines. If your landscaping is running into your air compressor, trim them back. You also need to make sure that your unit is level; you can check this with a leveler. 

By conducting a thorough inspection of your HVAC system either by yourself or by a professional such as Chappel's Heating & Cooling, you'll be able to keep your system running smoothly. You will also be able to identify any larger issues, and take care of them in a timely manner.