HVAC Myth vs Fact | Don’t Be Played for a Fool
April Fools’ Day is best known for its hoaxes and practical jokes. But myths, misconceptions, and outright falsehoods get spread every day of the year.
As a homeowner, you probably get bombarded with lots of tips and tricks for the home. With this flood of information, sometimes it’s hard to separate fact from fiction.
But don’t worry, we won’t let you get played for a fool! Before you automatically believe the counsel you see or hear, check them against these common HVAC myths.
Common HVAC Myths
MYTH: Cranking the thermostat all the way up or all the way down will make my home heat or cool faster.
FACT: Yes, it’s tempting. You are uncomfortable and want to feel the heating or cooling system as fast as possible. Unfortunately, turning the thermostat way up or way down, also known as “oversteering,” won’t speed up the process. If you crank the thermostat up to 98 degrees to heat the home faster, you aren’t actually doing anything to improve your situation. In fact, only negative results can come from oversteering.
Why? Your HVAC system works at one speed no matter what the thermostat temperature is set to. So if you want to heat or cool your home faster, you’re going to have to invest in more expensive and time-intensive solutions, such as duct sealing or a new energy-efficient HVAC system. Try these weatherization tips to improve your home’s insulation and keep more of that conditioned air inside.
The lesson? Set your thermostat to the temperature you desire and leave it there. If you set the temperature way lower or higher than you need, you could forget to turn it off and end up wasting energy and feeling uncomfortable in the process.
Oversteering your thermostat will only make your HVAC system work harder than it needs to, resulting in higher energy bills and a potentially uncomfortable home.
If you want to feel warmer faster, we suggest setting the thermostat to your desired temperature (no higher than 70 degrees) and putting on warm weather clothing. If the sun is still shining, open up your sun-facing windows to allow the natural, heat-producing rays into the home.
If you want to feel cooler faster, we recommend setting the thermostat to your desired temperature (no lower than 77 degrees) and wearing less clothing and more breathable fabrics. Close the drapes and curtains and utilize your personal and ceiling fans to take advantage of the wind-chill effect.
Instead of constantly adjusting the thermostat manually, set your schedule with a programmable thermostat.
If you feel like your thermostat is playing tricks on you, you may be right! Make sure the thermostat is away from all heat sources, including sun rays and heat-producing appliances, like the oven or dish washer. Click here for more information on correct thermostat placement.
MYTH: My HVAC technician replaces my air filter during every service visit, so I don’t need to replace my filters.
FACT: While it’s true that most HVAC technicians will replace your air filter while conducting regularly scheduled annual HVAC maintenance, it’s important to change them more frequently than that.
In fact, most professionals recommend changing your air filters every 30-90 days. While the recommended rate of replacement will vary from household to household (depending on pets, household size, and other factors), it’s a good idea to check your air filter every 30 days and replace as necessary.
So set calendar and phone reminders for the first of every month to inspect your HVAC filter. Remove the filter from its slot and hold it up to the light to see if any light can pass through. If it is dirty and clogged, barely any light will shine through. If this is the case, replace your filter as soon as possible.
The next time you have an HVAC technician over for an inspection, ask them what kind of air filter is right for your home. Once you know the right filter for your home, you’ll want to purchase several backups so you don’t have to run to Home Depot every time you need to replace the filter.
If you don’t regularly replace your air filters, you could run the risk of premature breakdowns, poor indoor air quality, and other problems. Some HVAC systems even have an emergency shutoff mechanism when the filter becomes too clogged. If your HVAC system isn’t coming on, the first thing you should check is the condition of your air filter.
MYTH: I only need to call an HVAC specialist if something is broken.
FACT: Like other complicated machinery, your HVAC system needs periodic maintenance to perform effectively and efficiently. You wouldn’t go a year without performing some maintenance on your car, and the same holds true for your HVAC system.
In addition to the energy bill reductions and indoor air quality improvements, annual or bi-annual HVAC maintenance will also make sure your manufacturer warranties remain valid. Some manufacturers require annual or bi-annual service visits to maintain their original manufacturer warranties.
The hundred or so dollars that you spend on HVAC maintenance will be made up easily on energy bill savings and the extended lifespan of your HVAC system. We highly recommend scheduling heater maintenance every fall and air conditioning maintenance every spring. This will ensure your HVAC system runs smoothly and efficiently all year long.
With expert maintenance, you can expect to save hundreds of dollars every year and catch easy repairs before they become major problems.
Need a New HVAC System?
Contact Pacific Heating Cooling for a no-obligation, no-cost service appointment today.
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- Sick House Syndrome: Indoor Air Quality Solutions & Stats
Since 1984, we’ve been proudly serving our communities in Federal Way, Graham, Spanaway, University Place, Steilacoom, Sumner, Lakewood, Puyallup, Tacoma and Gig Harbor.
Call Pacific Heating Cooling for professional HVAC and indoor air quality solutions. Reach us 24/7 (no joke!) at 253.292.3995.