Just because we’ve made it through most of hurricane season doesn’t mean we’re in the clear quite yet. November 30th (the end of the season) is still over a month away, so it’s important to keep your home prepared and protected before a disaster hits.
People mostly prepare their homes by trimming trees, covering windows and bracing doors, oftentimes forgetting about their HVAC system. You might be wondering how exactly you can take precautions to reduce the chances of damage to your outdoor unit during a storm, so our experts at Channell Heating & Cooling have created this list of 5 ways you can prepare.
1. Secure Outdoor Unit
Making certain that your outdoor unit is bolted down tightly and securely is always a good idea to complete as one of the first steps in hurricane prep. High winds during strong storms can potentially shift or even completely detach your HVAC unit from its base. Keep hurricane straps on hand and use them if you know a hurricane is headed your way.
2. Lower Your Thermostat
If you know a storm is coming and has the potential to affect your electricity, prepare by shutting and covering windows as well as lowering your thermostat cooler than usual. Preparing for the loss of electricity hours before it actually happens can help keep the air inside your home cool for much longer after the power goes out.
3. Shut It Off
As a hurricane approaches, it’s important to shut your system off and unplug it from the electrical source. This way, the system will be protected from damage caused by foreign objects getting lodged into the unit and compromising the motor or even a power surge caused by lightning.
4. Shield Your Unit
This step is critical if you’re expecting a hurricane to hit in your area. Shielding your outdoor unit with plywood, a tarp or some other means of protection will help keep it clear from branches, debris or other objects flying in the strong winds.
Remove the cover immediately after the weather has cleared to help avoid moisture-related damage to the inside and outside of your system.
5. Assess Damage
Avoid running your HVAC system until you’ve thoroughly assessed it for any major damage. Water from flooding, disconnected wires or refrigerant leaks are all possible complications that could affect the condition of your AC. After you’ve confirmed that there are no immediate issues with your unit, you may turn it on. But if you see any signs of damage, it’s best to contact a qualified professional who will guide you on what to do next.
Hazlehurst Hurricane Preparation Experts
We know that cleaning up after a hurricane can be long, hard work, but you don’t have to take on everything by yourself. If you suspect there’s a problem with your AC or need routine maintenance, reach out to Channell Heating & Cooling. Whether you’re prepping your air conditioner for a storm or need help with repairs after one, we’ve got you covered on all of your HVAC related hurricane essentials. Our dedicated team of technicians are pleased to help!