The internet is a great resource, but sometimes contradicting information can make even the simplest of questions complicated. To help set the record straight, here are the five most common HVAC myths that just aren’t true and how to avoid costly mistakes.
Myth 1: “You only need to change your filter once a year.”
A dirty filter can clog up your system, reducing the airflow, and potentially start a fire. The filter in your HVAC system should be replaced every 2 months to make sure the system is running at its highest efficiency. By checking the filter once a month yourself, you can clean the filter and see how well your system is running. It can also improve the quality of the air you and your family breathe.
Myth 2: “Closing the vents in an empty room will increase efficiency.”
Most people think that closing off a vent to a room that doesn’t get used often will reduce the amount of air that’s being circulated throughout their home and therefore be more energy efficient. However, when you close the vents, you can increase the air pressure in the ducts, potentially causing leaks or cracks at the vent seams. If your HVAC system is more modern, you could also throw the system off-balance and force it to work harder, making the system less effective. To prevent this from happening, make sure all your vents are uncovered.
Myth 3: “Turning off my AC when I leave is a waste of energy.”
Many people think that turning the AC off (and then later back on) when they leave uses more energy than just turning it down. In reality, the more often that your HVAC unit is off, the lower your bill will be and the longer your unit will last. More modern thermostat options can even be linked to your home’s WiFi, so you can adjust it on the go and while you are away from your home, allowing you to turn the AC off if you end up being out longer than expected or turn it back on before you arrive.
Myth 4: “The bigger the HVAC system the better.”
Bigger isn’t always better, especially when it comes to HVAC systems. If the system is too large, it will cycle on and off, costing you money and shortening the life of the unit. On the other end, if the unit is too small, it won’t be able to heat or cool your home. To make sure you get the perfect system for your home, consult with the professionals who are going to install the unit and ducts.
Myth 5: “I don’t need routine maintenance.”
It’s a pretty common misconception that HVAC systems only need to be checked when there is a problem. HVAC systems are incredibly complex pieces of machinery that should be checked routinely, much like a car. You can check things, like the filter, yourself, but getting an annual or biannual tune-up from a professional can save you from having major problems – and a major bill – down the road. By finding and fixing problems before they start, your system will be running smooth, no matter the season.