According to a study released by the Colorado State University Tropical Meteorology Project, our 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is predicted to be more active than usual.1 That being the case, it’s extremely important to ensure your home is ready for whatever nasty weather is thrown our way. With all of the preparation necessary before a hurricane hits, it’s easy to forget your HVAC system needs to be storm proofed as well.
To help we’ve put together a list of tips to help protect your HVAC system before and after the storm.
First, turn off your air conditioning system before the storm hits. You’ll need to make sure your entire system is turned off, both at the thermostat and the circuit breaker. If flooding occurs, leaving the power on to your air conditioner can cause electrical shock, and it also creates a fire hazard.
Next, batten down the hatches! Or in other words, secure your outdoor A/C unit. Make sure to use hurricane straps or bolts to secure your system to its base. The hardware holding your air conditioning unit can rust or come loose over time so check it to ensure it’s still viable. Loose equipment can move and cause significant damage during a hurricane.
Prior to a hurricane, it’s a good idea to eliminate any loose items near your air conditioning unit, such as patio furniture, plants, toys, or bikes—anything that could become airborne and cause damage by impact.
After the storm, if you live in an area that has flooded, make sure your air conditioner is dry before you try to operate it. Never restore power to a system until you are sure it is safe to do so. In this situation, it’s best to have a professional A/C technician do a thorough inspection to determine if it’s safe.
Before turning your A/C system back on you’ll need to check for any impact damage or debris around that could cause it to overheat or malfunction. If you’re not sure, this is another time you should have a professional technician check your system. Better safe, than sorry! You don’t want to end up causing additional, more expensive damage by turning it on prematurely.
Lastly, saltwater will have a corrosive effect on your air conditioning system and needs to be addressed immediately or it can destroy your system over time. A professional technician will know how to gently clean your equipment.
Storm proofing your air conditioning system is an important part of hurricane preparation. These simple steps can be the difference between major and minor repairs and being prepared can lessen the aftermath in terms of your overall home comfort. As your local Florida HVAC specialist, Rainaldi Home Services can help with all of your hurricane preparedness questions and will be there after the storm passes to help ensure your system is safe and ready to continue keeping your family comfortable. Give us a call at (407) 413-9795 or contact us online.
1Donegan, Jonathan Belles, and Brian. “2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season Expected to Be More Active Than Normal, Colorado State University Outlook Says.” The Weather Channel, The Weather Channel, 3 Apr. 2020, weather.com/storms/hurricane/news/2020-04-01-2020-atlantic-hurricane-season-april-outlook.