If you’re a facility owner unfamiliar with the ins-and-outs of HVAC equipment, you’re not alone. Keeping up with the maintenance for some of your more costly facility features can be tricky — and expensive. If you want to get the most out of your investment in your equipment and your building, there are ten quick and easy steps to keep your HVAC happy and healthy. When your annual performance checkup comes around, your contractor is sure to be impressed with your newly-acquired mechanic skills (and isn’t that what really matters?).
Do-it-yourself HVAC maintenance checklist:
1. Clean and adjust blower components to provide proper system airflow.
Airflow problems can reduce your system’s efficiency by up to 15 percent.
2. Measure your central AC’s refrigerant level and adjust if necessary.
An incorrect amount refrigerant will make your system less efficient.
3. Clean evaporator and condenser AC coils.
Dirty coils cause the system to run longer just to complete the same tasks, increasing energy consumption.
4. Check all gas connections and heat exchangers.
A damaged heat exchanger causes improper burner operation.
5. Clean or change air filters once every month.
A dirty filter can increase energy costs and damage your equipment — which can add up very quickly.
6. Tighten all electrical connections and measure voltage and current on motors.
Faulty electrical connections can cause unsafe operation of your system and reduce the life of major components.
7. Review your thermostat settings.
Make sure your cooling and heating system lowers to save energy while you are out of the building.
8. Lubricate moving parts.
Parts that lack lubrication cause friction in motors and increases electricity consumption.
9. Check and inspect the condensate drain in your central AC and furnace.
A plugged drain can cause water damage and affect humidity levels in your building.
10. Test emergency controls of the system.
Ensure the system starts, operates, and shuts off in a timely way in case you need to shut it down in the event of a grid emergency.
Here’s a very basic outline of a typical HVAC system so you can get familiar before diving in to full mechanic-mode:
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