HVAC System Basics for New Homeowners

Congrats on picking out your first home! You are undoubtedly pleased with your investment, even though you may feel overwhelmed by all these new responsibilities. Now that you’re a homeowner, not the renter, it’s your job to care for all your home’s appliances and utilities, such as the heating and cooling equipment.

If the only interaction you’ve ever come across with a furnace or air conditioner is to use the thermostat, you have plenty to learn. Get started with 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 the perfect climate, your new home most likely has this system to keep you warm during the winter and cool throughout the summer. Here are the important parts of an HVAC system:

  • Comfort units, such as an air conditioner, air-source heat pump, furnace, boiler, geothermal heat pump or ductless mini-split, to name a few choices.
  • Ductwork connected to return and supply registers with regards to air-forced systems including ACs, heat pumps and furnaces.
  • Radiators or hot water distribution systems in the case of boilers.
  • Indoor air quality products, including 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 renting your home, your landlord likely managed any HVAC maintenance tasks like replacing the air filter. They may or may not have also handled the bill for comprehensive heating and cooling inspections.

Now that you’re responsible for this, you can give preventive maintenance the attention it deserves. First, perform these do-it-yourself HVAC maintenance tasks:

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

Then, schedule yearly maintenance for each HVAC unit. Only an experienced professional can perform in-depth tasks like cleaning the furnace burners, recharging the AC refrigerant and measuring air leaks in the ductwork. Anticipate the following perks when you get a professional to inspect your system once a year:

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

Watch for Signs of Trouble

Repairing and replacing the HVAC system is the homeowner’s responsibility. Watch for these signs that it’s time to contact a heating and cooling contractor:

  • Loud noise: Don’t ignore a whining, rattling, clanking or banging sound. It might be a cry for help from your home's furnace or air conditioner.
  • Comfort or air quality problems: Inconsistent temperatures, high or low humidity, stale rooms and mold-like smells are often associated with faulty HVAC equipment.
  • Reduced energy efficiency: Are your bills suddenly increasing? This can mean your heating and cooling system isn’t functioning correctly.
  • Old age: Like all mechanical equipment, HVAC systems inevitably give out. The standard life span of a furnace or boiler is 15 years, while air conditioners and heat pumps run about a decade.

Understand the HVAC Replacement Process

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

  • Describe the problem to the contractor and allow them to take a closer look at it more in-depth.
  • The technician will diagnose the problem and suggest possible solutions. A repair may be viable, but according to the unit’s condition and age, a replacement can be more cost-effective.
  • You can obtain various opinions and estimates from assorted contractors if you prefer.
  • When you work with Stallion Heating Plumbing Air Conditioning, a residential sales consultant will determine what HVAC system, brand, fuel type and efficiency rating is perfect for you.
  • The contractor will supply you with a written estimate detailing the work needed, the equipment they’ll install and the overall cost. You might also be given details about warranty coverage, service plans and financing options.
  • Schedule the installation once you pick what system you want. The technician will handle everything, like hauling away the old equipment for proper disposal.
  • The sales consultant will review the new system with you, explaining how to use it, addressing any questions and providing all the needed documentation.

Call Stallion Heating Plumbing Air Conditioning

If you have questions about these HVAC system fundamentals, feel free to call Stallion Heating Plumbing Air Conditioning. We emphasize customer education to help you make an educated decision about your home comfort system. Our team is well-versed in a full array of HVAC services, so give us a call for anything from furnace maintenance to AC repair to heat pump installation. For more details or to ask about an estimate, please call your local Stallion Heating Plumbing Air Conditioning office today.


chat now widget box