Troubleshooting your Hampton Roads, VA Heat Pump. What You can Do and What You Should Leave for the Technician.
Hampton Roads, VA, having just recorded some of the hottest summer temperatures in its history (as has much of the Southern United States), is not a place that you want to fall behind on your air conditioning maintenance.
Proper at home air conditioning care and routine AC repair appointments from a licensed professional are both essential to maintaining a good living standard in the otherwise scorching, record-setting temperatures of recent summers. Many households in Hampton Roads, VA are moving towards high-efficiency air-conditioning units that are controlled by heat pumps, which require even more routine maintenance than previous generations of HVAC machines.
There are sometimes some confusion between what constitutes a routine maintenance and what a licensed technician should handle. Below are some of the things that you as a homeowner should do to make sure that your heat pump is in good working order.
1. Make sure to change the filters in your heat pump on a monthly basis.
The filters in your heat pump are the first indication that you have some air conditioning maintenance to take care of. Although filters are supposed to be dirty and sometimes wet, as it is their job to catch contaminants and mold inducing substances from the outside air, they must be cleaned on a routine basis. Otherwise they will quickly become catalysts for mold, mildew, allergens and bacteria themselves.
2. Clean up all debris around the outside tower and make sure that it stays clean.
If you have an outside tower that is surrounded by shrubbery or overhanging branches, clear at least a 2 foot radius of space between the unit and these structures.
Keeping the airflow clear from the outside is perhaps the second most important component of routine air conditioner maintenance. Shrubbery and trees that are full of pollen agents and other contaminants tends to clog up the altars and compressors very quickly if they are in close proximity to the unit. If you are in a city with a lot of unexpected wind torrents like Hampton Roads (many cities in the southern United States are like this), you must pay special attention to this tip. Nothing can cause your heat pump to clog up and become less efficient more quickly than outside debris coming from shrubbery in close proximity to the unit.
3. Empty the drain pan when it becomes full.
If you do not want your heat pump itself to become a catalyst for bacteria and fungi, make sure to empty the drain pan and clean it so that there is no stagnant water or wetness in it. This can save you a great deal of money on future AC repair appointments because mold and mildew can quickly break down the components of a heat pump.
4. Make sure to keep your thermostat in the area of a general temperature.
Extreme changes in the thermostat can cause more air conditioner maintenance appointments than a heat pump unit actually needs. If you do not have an automatic adjustment feature on your heat pump, you should make sure that your manual changes to the thermostat are slow and gradual in nature.
If you note that your changes in the thermostat are making your heat pump turn on and off, cease the action immediately.
Almost all other AC repairs should be undertaken by a licensed technician. However, if you keep your end of the bargain up when it comes to air conditioning maintenance, you will not have to see these technicians very often.
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