The rainy season is upon us, OKC! Is your HVAC prepared for spring weather?
An Oklahoma spring is even more unpredictable than winter. Cold snaps that reach below freezing, electrical storms that bring hail and power outages – and that crazy wind that comes sweeping down the plain can all cause plenty of damage to local homes. And lets’ not even get started on the tornadoes! Because of the unique weather patterns presented every spring, it is important to prepare your HVAC system for potential problems. Physical damage from the elements as well as electrical damage from storms present a real threat and need to be addressed well in advance.
A savvy homeowner will follow this list of tips to prepare for any potential storm-related problems:
- Before a storm arrives, remove any loose objects that are close to the HVAC unit. Children’s toys, patio furniture and other items should be secured away from the HVAC area. High winds can smash these items into the unit and cause irreparable damage.
- Make sure that the surrounding vegetation (including tree limbs) is kept manicured and at a reasonable distance from the HVAC. Limbs and leaves can clog the vents after a storm, affecting its performance.
- Use a cover for your HVAC to keep out water during a heavy rain. Always make sure that the cover is removed before starting the unit.
- Install hail guards to ensure the fins on the outdoor condenser coil are not damaged. Hail guards offer permanent protection from hail and are sturdier than a basic grille.
- Get a programmable thermostat with a time-delay function, which prevents the system from restarting immediately after a power failure. This reduces the possibility of damaging the unit due to a voltage spike.
- A whole house surge protector will ensure that your HVAC, and all of your important appliances, are not harmed during an electrical storm.
- A backup generator is also a good idea if you live in an area that experiences frequent blackouts. A generator can keep part or all of your home powered-up whenever the electricity on your grid is interrupted by a storm. These units start up immediately when your home loses power – and typically run off your natural gas or propane supply.
Post-storm there are some considerations that you will want to take into account:
- After the storm has passed, make sure that the unit is not under water or has taken on any water internally before turning it on.
- Always change the HVAC air filter after a storm.
- Clear away any debris that may have fallen on or around the unit.
- Bacteria and sewage are sometimes the result of heavy flooding. If your system has been compromised by floodwater, make sure that a professional technician is called to investigate.
The Oklahoma weather might be unpredictable, but that doesn’t mean you need to be caught off guard! Being proactive with spring weather maintenance can help you avoid unnecessary repairs or costly replacement. Get your HVAC prepared for spring weather and ensure safety and comfort all summer. Call us today if you need help or guidance with seasonal HVAC weather maintenance.