HVAC Maintenance after a Hurricane
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Hurricane-force winds, power outages and flooding have a very negative impact on a heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system. Weather is something that is out of our control, but you can always prepare your HVAC system to minimize damages caused by hurricanes.
In order to protect and maintain your HVAC system, you should be aware of the potential problems that these storms pose. An outdoor HVAC unit may end up having a damaged circuitry due to high winds. Air flow problems are caused by dirt and other loose objects that may have become airborne. Under extreme weather conditions, the unit may also be forced out of position—often ending up in the ground. AC maintenance takes a beating when exposed to water.
Several steps need to be taken prior to a storm so as to ensure the longevity of your HVAC system. You should make sure the system is turned off. The exterior portion of the unit should be covered completely. Loose equipment has the tendency to damage the unit, as it may fly around during the hurricane. So it is recommended that any such equipment is steered clear of your HVAC unit.
Even with the above mentioned preparedness steps, it is important that you invest a lot of time in the unit’s maintenance and safety steps that need to be taken post-storm. Some of these are as enumerated below.
Don’t turn on the unit
You should not turn on your unit as soon as the storm passes. Careful inspection of the entire unit is a must. You should carefully check for any damages to the exterior portion. Steps need to be taken to check if any debris has infiltrated the unit. Debris in the unit, if any, has to be completely removed. Now, if everything seems fine, you can turn on the HVAC system.
Check for flooding
The steps that need to be taken after the hurricane passes are very crucial in protecting your unit. Due to the storm, it is likely that the unit may be flooded. Therefore, it is very important that the unit is carefully inspected for any damages. Flooding with salt water needs to be cleaned efficiently as this water should not be allowed, under any circumstances, inside the unit.
Clean the tubes
The tubes of the HVAC unit should be cleaned before re-using the system. These tubes may have microbial growth due to the water that may flood them during the storm, which needs to be diligently cleaned.
Measure the airflow
Hurricanes severely affect the airflow in the HVAC unit. Airflow levels need to be measured and then compared to the expected flow levels of the specific type of industrial air conditioning unit that you are using. They need to be adjusted for proper functioning of your unit.
Replace broken sensors
Sensors are also an important part of the HVAC unit. Failed sensors can greatly affect the performance of the unit. This eventually leads to increased power consumption. The storm may cause certain sensors to break, and fixing these sensors before restarting your unit should be done carefully.
Even after carrying out these maintenance steps on your HVAC unit, it is recommended that you contact a certified technician to come and help you with fixing your HVAC unit for any damages that the storm may have caused. A certified technician can help you fix any damages that you may not be able to recognize. They can help remove debris from internal areas that you may not have been able to reach. At times, some form of wildlife might take refuge in your air conditioning unit which the technician can identify and remove. Asking a professional to check your system before you start re-using it is a good choice.
It is essential that you take the necessary preparedness steps before a hurricane or storm strikes, because only then can the above mentioned maintenance steps protect your HVAC unit from severe damages. After the storm has passed make sure you get your HVAC system thoroughly checked by a certified HVAC contractor.
Contact our team to ensure safety for your unit so that your HVAC unit makes out of the storm safe and secure.