HVAC Maintenance While You Are on Vacation
HVAC Maintenance Before and After Your Vacation
Summer months are traditionally times for family vacations, sometimes weekend excursions, and sometimes extended periods. Relaxation and recharging are important breaks to help us survive the pressures and tedium of work-a-day/school-a-day months. Vacationers take precautions to remain safe during their travels. Here are some precautions to take to reduce the chance of returning to a tragedy at home.
Pre-vacation HVAC Maintenance Planning
Before you leave, take some strategic steps to ensure safety at home.
- Investigate recent burglaries in your neighborhood. If you are unfamiliar with local neighborhood watch websites, just search “burglaries near me,” and follow the links. Expect recommendations to avoid mistakes local criminals are exploiting.
- Hold your mail and newspaper deliveries. Notify someone local to pick up any packages that are delivered while you’re away. Nothing screams “unoccupied” like abandoned deliveries.
- Connect with a trusted family member or friend who can make periodic visits, giving evidence of activity. During these visits, someone can check for trouble, water plants, and turn lights on and off to mimic normal activities. Leave some simple gifts for their kindness, such as muffins or cookies; they have welcomed rewards for valued visits.
- Alert any security provider of your absence.
Last Minute HVAC Maintenance Prep
Isn’t it amazing how much work you get down the day before vacation? Here are a few things to add to your “to-do list.”
- Make sure the lawn is mown and trimmed. Depending on the length of the trip, you may need to arrange for lawn care during your absence.
- Make sure to bring the trash can in after it is emptied. This might be a task left to a trusted family member or friend.
- Close the blinds and put valuables that might tempt someone out of sight.
- Put strategic lights on a timer to mimic normal, household activities. A few hours during the evening and a few hours in the morning are usually enough.
- Program the thermostat higher, but don’t turn the AC off. The house doesn’t need to be cooled to the same temperature as when occupied, but the AC also removes humidity. This prevents mold or mildew growth and prevents wood furniture/surfaces from absorbing moisture.
- Clean the refrigerator and kitchen, removing food that may spoil during your trip. Take any smelly trash outside.
- Make a security sweep outside. Bring in any “hidden” spare keys. Make sure every window and door is locked. Park vehicles left behind in the garage or out of sight.
- Unplug TVs, unused chargers, and computers that will not be used. This avoids damage from power surges while you are away and reduces unnecessary energy use.
- As you leave, turn off the main water valve. Your pipes will stay full, ensuring clean water when you return. By turning the water off, it minimizes damage should a water leak or pipe burst occur. Turn your water heater off while you are away.
While you are away, avoid posting pictures and accounts of your trip to public social media sites—make sure the entire family abides by this guideline. Clever criminals watch for such indications of empty homes and can undo your other security steps. Post-vacation, you will have plenty of time to share vacation details with really interested people.
HVAC Maintenance Upon Your Return
- If you use a Smart thermostat, prepare your home for a welcoming return. Turn the AC down at least 30 minutes before your ETA.
- Be patient, as your household systems return to normal use. Turn the water on first before you turn the water heater on; anticipate an hour or so before hot water is available. Plan for your first meal back to relieve stress.
Let us help you with your HVAC Maintenance this summer!
Contact our HVAC Maintenance team at Doctor Cool & Professor Heat today at 281-338-8751 or email Doctor Cool and let our professional Residential HVAC Maintenance technicians assist with all of your AC services.