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5 Tips to Prepare Your HVAC Unit for Winter

While we are only just now starting to see the effects of fall here in Gainesville, the cooler chill in the air is a reminder that those cold days are just around the corner. Before you know it, it will be time to turn on the heat for the season. It’s important to prepare your HVAC unit before the cold air hits to ensure it is operational, energy-efficient, and most of all, safe.

At Stellar Services, we work hard to ensure that your HVAC unit is working at its best all year long. From protecting your unit with regular AC maintenance, to making emergency AC repairs, to improving your indoor air quality, we have the AC services to keep your unit running at its best!

How Do HVAC Heat Pumps Work?

Most HVAC units in Gainesville and North Central Florida are equipped with a heat pump to heat a home during the cooler times of the year. According to, when properly installed, an air-source heat pump can deliver one-and-a-half to three times more heat energy to a home than the electrical energy it consumes. Heat pumps are certainly an energy-efficient way to heat your home in the winter.

Heat pumps can be described as “heat transporters”, constantly moving warm air from one place to another. The compressor of your HVAC unit cools your home by cycling out warm air in the summer and works exactly the opposite when you turn on the heat in the winter. An advantage of a heat pump over a furnace is that it is simply moving hot air, not generating it, making it much more energy efficient.

5 Tips to Prep Your HVAC Unit for Winter

In order to keep your HVAC’s heat pump working properly, here are a few tips from us to maximize efficiency, safety, and comfort:

1. Replace the Air Filter

Replacing the air filter all year long is a good habit to improve the health of your HVAC unit. An air filter serves two purposes: keeping particulates and dust out of your HVAC unit as well as filtering the air in your home. Replacing your air filter regularly can drastically prolong the life of your HVAC unit, and using an allergen filter can also improve your indoor air quality. Stellar Services recommends you replace your air filter every month for optimum filtering.

2. Clean the Air Ducts

Even with the best filters, the air ducts in your home can collect dust, allergens, mold, and other contaminants throughout the year. When you turn on the heat, these contaminants may react with the heat and their effects can become more severe. Fall is the perfect time to schedule a duct cleaning service to ensure your ducts are ready for the heat.

3. Examine the Belt

Inside your HVAC unit, there is a belt that powers the blower, moving the air through the outdoor compressor. You can check this belt for issues such as cracks or damage. If you see any of these signs, it will need to be replaced. These belts wear down over time, especially in states like Florida, with its high temperatures and prolonged AC use.

4. Inspect the Vents

It’s easy to forget that the vents in your home are an important piece of your HVAC system. Make sure that the vents in your home aren’t blocked by furniture or other items that could obstruct the airflow. Poor airflow to your HVAC unit can cause it to work harder to pump the air, putting unnecessary stress on your unit.

5. Schedule Maintenance

As the winter season approaches, the wisest choice you can make to protect your HVAC unit is to schedule maintenance with a qualified HVAC technician. A technician can inspect all aspects of your unit and knows where to find potential issues that may lead to problems or danger down the line.

Call Stellar Services for Winter HVAC Preparation

Stellar Services has served the Gainesville, FL area for years. We offer services that range from HVAC maintenance, HVAC installation, as well as HVAC repair. Our main focus is to keep your family safe and comfortable all year long, while providing honest service with integrity. If you have any questions about your HVAC unit and prepping it for the winter, give us a call.