It’s the time of year when spring storm preparation should be on your household “to-do” list. Here in the Atlanta area, the season for potentially severe weather begins in February and extends to June. During that period, severe storms including heavy rain, hail, high wind and lightning strikes are more likely. Not to mention the threat of tornadoes in North Georgia exceeds twice the national average.
Severe weather can pose a threat to all parts of your home. Your HVAC system is among the most expensive single components of the household and its units are vulnerable to weather extremes both directly — at the exposed, outdoor half of the central air conditioner — and indirectly, due to electrical surges affecting the entire house.
Here are a few spring storm preparation tips to ensure your HVAC system gets through this season and keeps you comfortable through many more:
- When the threat of severe weather is imminent, turn off the system at the thermostat. Even better, cut off electrical power to the entire unit at the circuit breaker.
- Outside, cover the outdoor component of the central A/C. Commercially-available covers are sized to fit your unit. For added protection from falling objects like limbs, place a piece of plywood atop the unit after it’s covered and weight it down with bricks.
- Power surges are frequent in electrical storms. Grid power may be affected, with surges likely as power is restored after an outage. Lightning strikes may also send high-voltage surges through home wiring. Because your central A/C system is directly wired into home circuits, a whole-house surge suppression system installed behind the electrical meter or at your main electrical panel is required for adequate protection against surges.
- Before powering the HVAC system on, uncover the outside unit and check for signs of damage. If water has entered the home, make sure that indoor HVAC components including ductwork have not been inundated by water. Contact a qualified HVAC service provider if you have any doubt about restarting your system.
Ask the experts at Powers Heating & Air for more information about spring storm preparation to protect your HVAC system.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about storm preparation and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 770-487-2040.
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