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Don’t Let Your Pet Cause an HVAC Breakdown: Follow These Maintenance Tips

Dustin Edwards Written by Dustin Edwards
Kitten in towels | Edwards Heating & Air

Some say owning a pet is a privilege that comes with responsibilities, and the same can be said for your residential heating and air system.  Pets are cute and cuddly, but they also produce pet dander, hair, and tend to bite or claw things they shouldn’t.  All of these things can affect the efficiency of your unit and may even require you to have continued HVAC service or invest in an HVAC system replacement.

Preventative HVAC Maintenance

The best way to keep your HVAC system healthy and operating efficiently is to have preventive maintenance performed at least twice a year; in the spring for your air conditioner, in the fall for your furnace, and both in the spring and fall for heat pump systems.  Air filters are your best defense against poor indoor air quality caused by pet dander, hair, and other contaminants, but important components in your system can still be affected by your pets.  Typical HVAC maintenance consists of:

Gas FuranceAir ConditionerHeat Pump
    • Inspect, clean and adjust automatic controls
    • Inspect and clean burners
    • Adjust combustion for optimum fuel efficiency
    • Lubricate as needed
    • Test for combustion leaks
    • Test safety shutoff response
    • Check blower belt wear, tension, and alignment
    • Check flue for satisfactory operation
    • Filter change
    • Clean condenser coil
    • Check electrical connections for tightness
    • Adjust system for optimum cooling
    • Check for oil and refrigerant leaks
    • Check safety devices
    • Check blower belt wear, tension, and alignment
    • Check condensate drain
    • Filter change
    • Adding refrigerant if needed
    • Check defrost cycle and reversing valve operation
    • Adjust air volume for maximum efficiency
    • Check safety devices and electrical connections for tightness
    • Check blower belt wear
    • Check for oil and refrigerant leaks
    • Check refrigerant level
    • Check condensate drain
    • Filter change

Need HVAC Service

When maintenance doesn’t keep all problems at bay, it’s time to call an HVAC contractor and schedule HVAC service for your system.  Homeowners who have pets will need to have their filters cleaned or replaced more frequently than homes without pets.  The air ducts inside your home can also become clogged due to excess dander, hair, and dirt from pets.  An HVAC contractor can clean and inspect your ductwork for any leaks.  If any leaks are found during the inspection, the HVAC contractor will be able to fix or replace the damaged ducts quickly and affordably.  

Pets can also cause harm to your outdoor unit.  Pets can cause damage by clawing the fins and biting the cables. Urinating on the outdoor unit is another pet damage issue. You can protect your outdoor components by securing them in an area your pets do not have access to – be sure that there is plenty of clearance for airflow and access to the unit.

Time for an HVAC Replacement

If you are having constant HVAC service calls performed on your unit, that could indicate it’s time for a complete HVAC replacement.  If your system is over 10 years old, an HVAC replacement might also be in your best interest.  

HVAC maintenance is your best option for maintaining a healthy system.  Call Edwards Heating & Air for all of your maintenance, service, and HVAC replacement needs.