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After your house and your vehicle, your home appliances represent some of the most significant financial investments in your life. Most people purchase air conditioning and heating appliances two or three times in their life or even less!
When you do make the investment in a new air conditioner, heat pump or furnace, you want to make sure it lasts as long as possible and costs as little as possible to maintain and repair.
Unfortunately, Canada’s seasonal extremes can be very hard on HVAC equipment, particularly on those components that must remain outside all year.
In this timely post, we share some of our favourite weatherproofing tips to protect your heating and cooling investment this winter season.
Winterize Your Air Conditioner
It is all too easy to forget about your air conditioner when the temperatures start to head south for the winter. Yet come spring, it can be an unpleasant surprise to discover that winter storms have created costly maintenance needs that must be addressed before you can use your A/C again.
For this reason, we recommend a two-step approach to winterizing and weatherproofing your air conditioner well before winter actually arrives.
1. Schedule your end-of-season inspection and tune-up service
After your A/C unit has been running continually all summer, it is reasonable to assume there has been some routine wear and tear. By having your air conditioner inspected for safety, you ensure there are no loose wires or connections that could create a fire risk this winter.
Similarly, by scheduling a seasonal maintenance tune-up, you get a jump on your spring cleaning to-do list by making small repairs now, while it is on your mind. This way, when the weather warms up again next year, all you will need to do is turn the A/C on to enjoy the cool.
2. Cover the outside components for extra protection
It is true that not everyone is a fan of covering up their outdoor A/C components during the winter. A too-tight cover can create moisture that leads to mould, mildew or even unwelcome winter occupants such as rodents and insects.
However, leaving your air conditioner exposed to the elements can cause costly damage as well, especially when Canada’s winter storms begin to roll through.
Here, we recommend one of two approaches: either cover your air conditioner fully or build some kind of a shelter or temporary roof for it that still allows for air circulation.
If you cover your air conditioner, choose a waterproof yet breathable cover material to guard against excessive humidity. Also make a point to remove the cover periodically during nice winter days to check the unit all over for mould or pests.
If you elect to build a roof or canopy over the A/C unit, just make sure to keep this cover clear of snow and ice and falling debris so it doesn’t collapse onto the A/C unit and cause damage. Also check the A/C coils and fan blades periodically and clear away any debris or thick snow that could turn to heavy ice and cause damage.
Winterize Your Furnace or Heat Pump
The key to winterizing your furnace or heat pump is to make sure it is ready to operate both safely and efficiently.
Scheduling your annual furnace safety inspection and maintenance service is a great way to check this task off your list.
The safety inspection focuses on making sure your heating equipment does not pose a home fire risk. Wiring, electrical connections, pilot light and ignition system cleaning and testing all help ensure everything is operating as it should.
The maintenance tune-up focuses on making small repairs that produce big gains in operational efficiency that can save you money all winter long.
From opening, inspecting and cleaning your air registers and exhaust vents to changing your furnace filter, testing your carbon monoxide detector, and conducting thermostat and temperature accuracy tests, your heating system will be primed and ready to work safely and efficiently after your seasonal preventative maintenance appointment.
Save Even More on HVAC Preventative Maintenance
Many of our new clients initially contact us because they have a heating or cooling emergency and they call to request our 24/7 emergency repair service.
But our ultimate goal is to help you avoid ever having to make that emergency repair call! Over the nearly 100 years Shipton’s has been serving customers in and around the Hamilton area, we have seen again and again how a bit of preventative HVAC maintenance now can prevent major costly outages later.
We offer a tiered preventative maintenance program with customized service options for new, mid-life and late-life HVAC systems.
Brand-new systems often simply need an annual safety inspection and a bit of tightening and tuning here and there. For these systems, we recommend our basic Residential Energy Savings Agreement.
Mid-life systems may need additional repairs and parts replacements to prolong their useful life and boost efficiency. These systems are best served by our Residential Advantage Savings Agreement.
Late-life systems that are nearing the end of their useful life have their own maintenance and repair needs that can be less predictable cost-wise. Our Residential Ultra Savings Agreement is tailored specifically for these systems.
Get in Touch
Here at Shipton’s Heating & Cooling, we spend our days working hard to make sure you stay cool and comfortable in summer and warm and comfortable in winter.
Right now and through November 30, 2018, save up to $1,850 when you purchase any new furnace and air conditioning combination system.
Contact us online or give us a call at 905-549-4616 to learn more about this special offer and to schedule your annual furnace inspection and maintenance service! Already had your service done? Refer a friend and earn $25 to $100 when they schedule service with Shipton’s!