Three tips to protect your heating and air conditioning system this winter

Published by Parisa Ostovari

Winter weather can be harmful to your home’s heating and air conditioning system. Just as you take extra safety precautions when driving on icy roads, you should take precautions to protect your home’s HVAC system.

Follow our tips to protect your HVAC system from snow and ice.

Clear snow and ice from outside pipes
While you’re out clearing snow off the driveway, make sure to check the furnace intake and exhaust pipes. These pipes are usually a foot or two above the ground, so if there’s more than a few inches of snow, it’s important to check them. Removing snow and ice will help prevent thawing and refreezing in the pipes, which can cause your furnace to quit working.

Troubleshooting: The furnace may stop working if the intake and exhaust pipes are blocked. Turn off the power to the furnace, clear the pipes and then turn the power back on. If there is still an issue, a Bell Brothers service technician is happy to come to your house to see what is causing the problem.

Remove snow and ice from the gas meter
It’s also important to keep the gas meter clear of snow and ice. It not only records how much gas is used, but it also regulates the pressure of the gas entering your home. If the vents on the meter become plugged by snow or ice, it can cause erratic pressure. This can cause the furnace or water heater to not work properly.

Troubleshooting: If the furnace or water heater pilot light won’t stay on, it could be a sign the gas pressure is not stable. Check the meter to ensure it isn’t covered with snow and ice. If it is, carefully clear it off. If the equipment is still not working properly, schedule a Bell Brothers service technician to take a look.

Don’t cover your outdoor air conditioning unit
You may have read or heard that homeowners should cover the outdoor air conditioning unit to protect it from snow. This is incorrect. Covering the unit can allow moisture to build up, causing damage to the unit. It also provides a nice warm place for mice or other rodents to build a nest and pass time by chewing away at the wires in the air conditioner.

Let Bell Brothers help you protect your HVAC system this winter. Give us a call at 515-244-8911 or contact us online.