There’s an old saying about March: “In like a lamb, out like a lion.” (And sometimes the reverse!) The earliest reference to this is from a 1732 volume of “wise sayings,” which means the phrase has been around far longer than that. It’s a cute way to say that March offers some of the most unpredictable weather of the year, sometimes acting like December, and at other times acting like July.
However, here in the deserts of Southern California, our unpredictability is a bit more… predictable. Winters are mild (it was wonderful that we got some much-needed rain this year) and warmer weather arrives early. March is the best time to start getting your home ready to face the extreme heat of the middle of the year, because that extreme heat can come roaring in at any moment.
How to Prepare Your HVAC Systems for the Coming Weather
You shouldn’t simply stop using your heater and start using your air conditioner and hope for the best. Making the change between seasons requires taking some additional steps and working with an HVAC professional on some of them. Here is our advice for shifting your home in Highland, CA to air conditioning season.
The Heater: See that the furnace is completely shutdown
If you use a gas furnace for heat—which the majority of homes do—then it needs to be completely shut off when it’s no longer needed. Turn off the gas valves to the furnace, including the pilot light. Change the furnace’s air filter. Check around the home to see that none of the air vents are blocked. Test all your carbon monoxide detectors.
The AC: Arrange for air conditioning maintenance service
Annual maintenance is the most important step to getting the heating system and the air conditioning system ready for their respective seasons: heating maintenance in fall, air conditioning maintenance in spring. Scheduling your AC maintenance during March will help you get on the schedule early so you’ll beat out the worst heat. You can contact our offices to find out about our regular maintenance program, which makes the job easy—both for the heater and the AC—each year.
Having this air conditioning maintenance visit annually provides you with a number of benefits:
- It reduces the amount of work the air conditioner must do, improving its energy efficiency. A well-maintained air conditioning system will use 20% less energy than one that misses its regular inspections and tune-ups. That adds up to a great deal of money saved each year.
- The inspection part of the maintenance checks over all the major components to find places where repair issues are developing. This way the technicians can schedule repairs before the problems become worse. For example, technicians check on the refrigerant level and pressure in the AC. This determines if refrigerant is leaking. Loss of refrigerant can cause permanent damage to the air conditioner if the system runs. Technicians can seal the leaks and restore the refrigerant to its proper level.
- An AC that has its regular maintenance done each year will last longer than one that doesn’t. The standard lifespan of a central air conditioning system is between 10 to 15 years—but your AC won’t even reach half that if it isn’t tuned-up annually.
Russell’s Heating & Air Conditioning is here to help whenever you need AC or heating assistance. We’re open 24 hours a day!