In most parts of the United States, you can expect your home’s HVAC system to stand up to whatever mother nature has in store for it each year. However, Gilbert, AZ, isn’t like most places in the United States. Here, we get a monsoon season that can, and does, affect residential HVAC systems. The key for homeowners is to know what the monsoon season can do to their home’s HVAC and how to prepare for it. To help, here’s everything you need to know on the subject.
The HVAC Challenges Posed by Monsoon Season
At first glance, the monsoon season here in Gilbert may look just like a typical stretch of stormy weather happening anywhere. However, some of the unique conditions in the area mean that the monsoon season delivers a much bigger punch than that. Specifically, it can create conditions that can spell disaster for your HVAC.
For one thing, our normally-dry climate guarantees that any strong storm will create massive dust clouds. The high winds that come with the monsoon season routinely exceed 50 miles per hour here, so you can also expect flying debris, too. Plus, that same wind may also create horizontal rain, which, while interesting to look at, isn’t all that great for your HVAC. To avoid trouble, it’s important to take a few preventative steps to safeguard your home’s HVAC system before the worst of the bad weather sets in.
Keep Extra Air Filters on Hand
One important preparatory step you can take is to purchase a few extra air filters for your HVAC system. This is necessary because dust storms can choke your HVAC’s air filter and render your system anywhere from merely inefficient to completely ineffective. Under normal circumstances, you might expect your HVAC air filter to last you for around 90 days before you need to change it. During monsoon season, their lifespan may reduce to a single month or less. Since monsoon season lasts for parts of four months here, this means you should keep at least four extra air filters on hand to accommodate the extra dust.
Doing this will not only keep your HVAC operating well but will keep as much of the additional dust out of your HVAC and home as possible. Otherwise, it would build up inside your HVAC system’s blower fan and major components. When that happens, your HVAC will experience additional wear and tear and could develop problems that require professional repairs. Plus, your home’s air quality would worsen, harming the health of everyone in your home.
Monitor for Water Penetration
Another thing you’ll need to do to help your HVAC weather the monsoon season is to keep an eye out for water getting into parts of your system where it doesn’t belong. During extra heavy rain, it’s common for water to get into residential HVAC systems via their air intakes. When that happens, you could end up with mold growth in your ductwork and inside your HVAC’s indoor unit. If you catch this problem early, it’s simple to repair. If you don’t, however, remediation can be time-consuming and costly.
Clean the Area Around Your Outdoor Unit
Since high winds can also turn leaves, tree branches, and other detritus into projectiles, you should also clean up the area around your HVAC’s outdoor unit. This can help prevent any damage to your system when a big storm hits. It can also make your life easier in the aftermath of a storm since you’ll have less buildup in and around your outdoor unit to deal with. You’ll want to repeat this process after every storm to keep your outdoor unit clear and unobstructed.
Clean Your Outdoor Unit Itself After Storms
The dust kicked up during storms in monsoon season isn’t just bad for your HVAC’s indoor components but for its outdoor unit, too. When dust and dirt build up in the fins of your outdoor unit’s heat exchanger coil, it will reduce its efficiency and force your HVAC to work harder. If you’re lucky, this will only result in higher electricity bills. If you’re not, your HVAC system might experience a breakdown.
The good news is that it’s an easily preventable problem. All you have to do is make it a practice to clean your HVAC’s outdoor unit after any big storms. You can use a garden hose to do it since all you’re trying to do is dislodge any dust from the unit’s metal fins. You should avoid directing the spray at the fins themselves, and instead run water over them from above to do this. This will remove the dust while avoiding potential damage to your HVAC system.
Consider a Surge Protector
Another major facet of monsoon season here in Gilbert is lightning storms. These brilliant light shows are fun to watch from the safety of your home. However, they can also cause power surges that may harm your HVAC system. To guard against that, you should consider having A/C Doctors install a surge protector for your home’s HVAC equipment. This will minimize the chance of your system suffering damage during a lightning storm and makes it easy to restore your HVAC to working order after any storm-related power surge.
Check Your HVAC Condensate Drain Line
The additional humidity brought by monsoon season here can translate into between five and ten gallons of condensation draining from your HVAC each day. That makes it essential for you to check your system’s condensate drain line to make sure it’s unobstructed. In most homes, you’ll find the condensate line running out of an exterior wall, where it drips water slowly while your HVAC runs. You should check yours on a day when there’s no bad weather in the forecast. If you have your AC running but don’t see any water dripping from the line, you should schedule a visit from one of our expert HVAC technicians to find out why.
Schedule an HVAC Maintenance Visit
Of course, the best thing you can do to prepare your HVAC system for monsoon season is to schedule a maintenance visit from A/C Doctors. Our expert HVAC technicians can take care of many of the preparatory steps mentioned above and check your system itself to look for signs of trouble. Plus, they’ll clean and adjust your system so it operates at maximum efficiency all summer long.
HVAC maintenance is just one of the services we offer here at A/C Doctors. We also offer HVAC installation and repair services as well as comprehensive plumbing, indoor air quality, and ductwork services, too. We’re a family-owned and operated HVAC company with over 20 years of experience in the industry and a list of satisfied customers stretching from Gilbert to Sun City West. Plus, we even offer financing on approved credit to help you afford the HVAC systems and services your home needs.
So, for HVAC services and much more in Gilbert, call the experts at A/C Doctors today!