When a big storm is coming, a little bit of prep work can save your HVAC system from significant damage. Let's take a look at how you can prep your HVAC system for the next big storm.
1. Turn it off - Turn off the breakers to your HVAC system, heat pump, air handler and gas furnace. (Note: If you have a gas furnace, be sure to turn off the gas supply line also.) Turning the system off will protect it from the damaging surges that happen when the power fluctuates on and off or when it is powering back on. Power surges can cause serious damage to your HVAC system and is one of the biggest causes of major repairs following a tropical storm or hurricane.
2. Secure your outdoor unit - Make sure all the bolts are tight. Use hurricane straps, if possible, to prevent heavy winds from moving your outdoor unit.
3. Protect it from flood water - Even a tiny bit of flooding can cause major damage to your HVAC system. If flooding could be an issue, raise the unit up on concrete blocks to help avoid flood water from reaching your unit.
4. Protect it from flying debris - If your HVAC unit has a cover, use it. You might also be able to purchase one that fits securely on your specific unit. This will prevent your HVAC unit from being damaged by flying debris and heavy winds.
After the Storm
After the storm, do a thorough inspection of your HVAC unit. Check for any damage, flooding or issues that could lead to damage of your system. If you are uncertain if your unit has been damaged or if you find damage or the unit has been flooded, be sure to have a professional out to inspect and check the unit before turning it back on. If you inspect your unit and don't find any potential damage, make sure you wait until the power is securely restored and not fluctuating before you turn the breakers back on and restore power to the unit. You don't want to weather a storm and then have damage occur afterward due to fluctuating power outages.
We're entering into the peak of hurricane season here in South Carolina. If you need more advice on protecting your HVAC system, we are here for you. When the storm has passed, we'll be there to inspect your system and fix any damage your system might have sustained because of the storm. Carolina Comfort Systems is here when you need us both before and after a major storm or hurricane.