7 Common Mistakes To Avoid When It Comes to HVAC Maintenance

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Although the numbers might be surprising, an average American household indeed incurs an expenditure of more than $104 for electrical energy use every month. And one of the most significant contributors to the monthly electrical expense is the installed heating and cooling systems.

These systems are necessary to maintain adequate thermal comfort. You cannot completely eliminate them, but you can incorporate certain measures to ensure your heating and cooling system functions at optimal efficiency and utilizes as much less electricity as possible.

Following a regular maintenance schedule throughout the year can improve the efficiency of your HVAC system and reduce operational energy consumption.

Apart from attaining efficiency, maintenance is crucial for increasing the longevity of your HVAC system. However, many homeowners end up making grave mistakes when it comes to following maintenance protocols.

This article will discuss the common HVAC maintenance mistakes people make and what you can do to avoid them. Hurliman Heating is one of the leading HVAC service providers in Washington!

7 Common mistakes to avoid when it comes to HVAC maintenance

1. Not following the regular preventive maintenance schedule

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Preventive maintenance is vital for increasing the longevity of your heating and cooling systems. If you keep delaying preventive maintenance, your HVAC system has already lost a few years. While repairing can provide a solution, it will be costly, and your HVAC system has already suffered damage.

Faulty heating and cooling systems can also jeopardize your and your family’s safety. Your heating system can suddenly stop working on a freezing day, or the cooling system can break down on a hot summer day.

You will need to stay in discomfort unless a professional expert arrives to address the problem. However, such critical emergencies can easily be avoided by scheduling regular and periodic preventive maintenance.

Schedule checkups or maintenance twice a year, preferably in spring and fall, to avoid uncomfortable and expensive complications. Trained experts will examine the condition of your existing HVAC system and ensure everything is functioning smoothly.

2. Not replacing soiled filters

Your HVAC system functions by bringing air from the exterior environment into a unit, cooling it to a comfortable temperature, and dispersing it into your house. This ensures that oxygen-rich, fresh air is continuously circulated within your home’s interior.

However, the outside air can be filled with allergens, pollutants, dust debris, etc., that can gain entry indoors. Therefore, modern HVAC systems are designed with a series of filters to eliminate those contaminants. The more you use your heating and air conditioning system, the more contaminants will get deposited on the filters.

Filters should be examined and replaced every three months. Using soiled filters will not just degrade indoor air quality but also make your air conditioning system work harder to achieve a particular temperature.

Replacing old air filters with fresh ones is the best way to keep your heating and cooling system functioning smoothly for several years.

3. Using acidic cleaner to clean coils

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Another serious mistake that’s popular during HVAC maintenance is using an acidic cleaner to clean the outdoor unit’s coils. These coils attract maximum dust and contaminants and require effective cleaning. But they are not designed with materials to withstand harsh chemicals cleaning with acids, regardless of the potency.

A low-pressure stream of water is adequate for cleaning your coils. Grab a hose and pour down the water onto the coils while gently scrubbing them with a brush. A gentle scrub is more than enough to remove the dust and dirt accumulation on the coils.

After some gentle brushing and scrubbing, debris will gradually flake off. Your coils will be clean and good to go for the foreseeable future.

4. Not paying attention to strange noises

A moderate amount of noise is expected from every heating and cooling system. However, living with a system for a certain time makes you aware of normal and abnormal sounds. You can easily differentiate between them.

You should never ignore those strange sounds. In fact, they’re a tell-tale sign that your HVAC system requires immediate expert attention. When you ignore the early signs of malfunctioning, you invite more severe damage. In worse scenarios, it could completely break down during peak season. Thus, don’t postpone calling an expert. Schedule an appointment at the earliest.

5. Cleaning your vents only with a vacuum

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Regular utilization of your heating and cooling system (HVAC) traps dust and debris. Even when you regularly and rigorously replace your air filters, dust accumulation in the air vents is inevitable.

Regular vacuuming is recommended to remove debris from the surface. However, that just removes only a small percentage of accumulated dirt. Without proper care, you are not just inviting allergens and contaminated air to enter your home but also putting excessive strain on your heating and cooling system.

6. So what is the best way to clean your air ducts?

Proper and thorough cleaning of the air duct involves disassembling the entire duct system, cleaning the ducts using a vacuum, and then reassembling them once the cleanup is complete. This might be an overwhelming task. And therefore, we recommend hiring a local HVAC expert to do a professional cleaning.

7. Selecting a maintenance technician solely based on pricing

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Eventually, your heating and cooling system will require professional maintenance and repair. Although it is always recommended that you compare the pricing from different vendors, selecting an HVAC contractor solely based on price might not give you value for the investment.

Technicians determine the pricing based on the service quality they provide and their skill level. Selecting an HVAC technician that charges the least can lead to low-quality services.

Instead, hire an expert having relevant industry and system experience and provide a guarantee on their work. You might require to pay slightly more, but you’ll receive better quality service and won’t have to worry about draining your money to fix one issue repeatedly.


Avoiding these mistakes can save your HVAC system from potential damage, improve efficiency, and increase its lifespan. Connect with an HVAC expert today to schedule your maintenance.