As we head into the peak of hurricane season, it's important to know what to do to prepare your HVAC system should a major storm come our way. Here is a list of how to prepare before the storm and how to proceed after the storm to protect your HVAC system from damage or failure.
Tighten bolts on your outside unit and components.
- Invest in hurricane straps to help hold your outdoor unit in place during high winds.
- Protect your outdoor unit from damage caused by flying debris by covering your unit with a plywood box or tarp.
- If you are in a flood-prone area or your unit is in a low-lying spot, elevate the unit with concrete blocks or cinder blocks to avoid water damage from flooding or pooling water. (Note: if you need help with this task, call in a professional.)
- Before the storm arrives, close windows, blinds, curtains and doors. Then drop the temperature on your HVAC unit a few degrees until the storm arrives to trap as much cool air as possible in the home.
- When the storm is approaching, turn off the power to your HVAC unit and unplug it. This will protect your system from power surges caused by lightning strikes and intermittent outages on your electricity grid that can damage your HVAC system.
- After the storm, if you've lost power, wait until power is fully restored before turning your unit back on. Once power is on, plug the unit back in and turn any power switches or breakers back on. You'll want to do this as soon as possible to prevent mold growth from the moisture produced by the storm.
- If power is intermittent, wait until it is fully restored without further outages before you turn on your HVAC system. This avoids damage caused by power surges as the electric grid comes back online.
Being prepared for a hurricane is an essential part of living in the Myrtle Beach area. While you might know how best to prepare a hurricane kit with food, water, medicines, first aid, flashlights/lanterns and battery-powered radios and fans, many people don't even think about preparing your HVAC system for the storm. Not preparing your HVAC system can result in serious damage or breakdown. If you have any questions about preparing your HVAC system for hurricane season, give Carolina Comfort Systems a call.