Southern California is a great place to live, because for the most part, temperatures never get too extreme year-round. But while the summer highs and winter lows could be way worse, having quality HVAC equipment is still essential. Many people outside the state, or even in Northern California, don’t know about the cold nights in the high desert region of SoCal. Keep reading to learn our best tips for winter HVAC use in Southern California, and remember that for all your heating and air conditioning needs, you can always count on the experts at All Pro Plumbing, Heating, Air & Electric.
5 HVAC Tips for Southern California Winters
- Change the Filter: This is actually a good rule of thumb anytime the seasons change. At the beginning of winter, your heating system may have been sitting around for several months—especially in Southern California, where your heater tends to get way less use than your AC unit throughout the year. As a result, many residents of this region end up with systems that have dusty and clogged filters when they first fire up their heaters after the temperature drops. Make sure to check your HVAC filters often for this reason, replacing them as needed or cleaning them if you have a system with a reusable filter.
- Check for Leaks: Guess what—it’s not just standard AC units that leak! In fact, furnace and boiler leaks can be much more dangerous than AC leaks, and a heat pump leak can affect your comfort in the winter or the summer. Whether out of general wear and tear or a system malfunction, your heater may begin to leak for a number of reasons over time, so pay attention to the signs you’re dealing with a problem. You may start to notice more drafts around doors and windows, for instance, or cold spots throughout your home. If you find you are experiencing these issues in your house this winter, make sure to call an HVAC tech to find out whether you have a heater leak ASAP.
- Clean the Condenser Coils: An HVAC system’s condenser coils are essential in winter and in summer. When the weather gets cold out, your system’s coils allow heat into your space to warm it up. If a condenser coil is dusty, broken, or even frozen, your heater will not be able to do its job, and you will not only be uncomfortable, but your system may start to break down sooner than it should. If you find that your system’s condenser coils are covered with frost (unlikely in Southern California but still possible,) wipe them down with warm water. If your system continues to suffer even after you have done this, call a technician to see if there is a bigger problem with the condenser coils.
- Dust & Wipe Down Vents: Over the summer, the combination of the warm weather and the moisture from your air conditioner can lead to problems like mold growth in the HVAC vents. It is also not uncommon for vents to recirculate dust, pollen, and pet dander, all of which are bad for your indoor air quality and can affect your system’s performance. For this reason, it is a good idea to dust and wipe down your HVAC vents every time the season changes. In winter, we suggest actually vacuuming the free vents, to really get rid of the dust that has built up throughout the year.
- Schedule Professional HVAC Maintenance: At the end of the day, the one surefire thing you can do to improve your heating system’s performance this winter is to call for professional maintenance. At Pro Plumbing, Heating, Air & Electric, our experienced technicians can conduct a thorough inspection of your heating unit, looking for leaks, wiring issues, and any number of other problems. We promise that with a check-up from our heating and cooling experts, your system will function better all winter long—and stay safe the rest of the year, too.