Planning a Winter Vacation? Follow These Tips to Keep Your House and HVAC Equipment Safe!

According to AAA, around one in three Americans will take a winter trip or vacation. Winter weather-related disasters, home break-ins, and other bad occurrences are prevalent during the winter. Keep your house and HVAC system safe and sound while you are enjoying the time away from home.

Is Your Heating System Working Properly?

Check the furnace pilot light, air filter, thermostat and other items to ensure they are in proper working order. If you have not scheduled your annual furnace tune up make sure you have that done before you leave.

Should You Turn The HVAC System Off?

Instead of turning the HVAC system off completely, simply lower the thermostat to no lower than 55 degrees. Heat and cold, combined with high or low humidity, can wreak havoc on your home and possessions. Your books, furniture and other sensitive possessions could be damaged if your temperature would go below 55 degrees. Most professionals suggest lowering the thermostat 10 degrees lower than normal while you are away.

Replace the Air Filter

Since your HVAC system will periodically come on to keep temperature and humidity levels from damaging your home and possessions, you will want to make sure your air filter lasts the duration of your trip.

Clean Area Around Indoor Air Handling Unit

Air handlers usually connect to a duct-work ventilation system that distributes the conditioned air through your home and returns it to the AHU. There should be a minimum 3-foot clearance around your indoor air handling unit. Make sure that anything that could burn is far away from the unit. Clear away your storage and other items from around the HVAC system.

Trim Plants and Clear Area Around Outdoor Heat Pump Unit

Your outdoor heat pump is worthless without an air handler to circulate the air throughout your home. Make sure shrubs and plants that could limit airflow and cause clogs and other problems for your outdoor HVAC unit are trimmed. Always maintain a minimum of 2 foot clearance around the unit so it can get proper airflow.

Set Water Heater to “Vacation” Mode

A water heating system is one of the utilities that need to be monitored to cut down the energy cost. Generally, the water heater is using 20% or more of the energy in our household. To save money on a water heater is big benefit. This is why, water heater vacation setting is ideal for this purpose, to save energy while you are away from home. Think of the savings you can get if you set your water heater on “vacation setting”. This will prevent waste of money through energy standby loss. You don’t want to be keeping a huge tank of hot water sizzling while nobody is at home to enjoy it.

Install a Humidification System

Installing a good room humidifier during the winter season is of utmost importance for keeping the inside air moist and healthy. A humidification systems will automatically detect humidity problems and add or remove moisture to get your home into the ideal humidity range.

Clean Your Home

Cleaning your home is good for indoor air quality. With the home sitting dormant while you’re away, dust and other debris can accumulate. Airborne contaminants develop without proper ventilation, leading to irritation of respiratory conditions or simply the nuisance of sneezing or a stuffy nose. You can reduce the amount of dust and pollutants in the home by vacuuming the carpets, dusting, cleaning the dishes, and inserting a fresh air filter. Cleaning may seem low on the list of important measures but it can also have a positive impact when your return to a nice clean home.

A Checklist To Complete Before You Leave

  • Unplug your kitchen appliances, toaster, can openers, coffee pot, etc.
  • Have a friend pick up any newspapers and water your indoor plants
  • Clear out the fridge and freezer in case of a blackout
  • Call the post office and have them hold your mail
  • Unplug all your electronics
  • Turn off power strips

Contact us (859-918-5400) for a Free Consultation!

About Phoenix Comfort Systems

Phoenix Comfort provides a full range of air conditioning and heating repair, installation, and maintenance services for residential and commercial customers. We keep your air conditioning and heating systems in their best condition and ready to go when you need them most, following the industry’s “best practice” methods and standards. Phoenix Comfort carries a full line of quiet, energy-efficient air conditioning and heating equipment.
>> Learn More