DIY vs Hiring a Professional for Your HVAC System: Which Option to Choose?

Couple considering an hvac project

When faced with simple projects around the house, you may choose to take them on yourself. Quick, easy, and frequent tasks that you can do saves you money, time, and hassle.

But, when it comes to your heating and cooling system there are a few tasks beyond the skills of the average DIY’er. When to call in a professional can vary, so we wanted to go over a list of basic projects.

So, when can you DIY vs. call a professional?

HVAC Projects That Can Be DIY

As a DIY fan, you’re eager to discover which HVAC issues you can fix on your own. Here are the projects a homeowner can complete with relative ease.

1. Changing the Air Filter

Regularly changing the air filter prolongs the life of your HVAC system and also ensures you get the best indoor air quality throughout the year.

A well installed HVAC system should provide easy access to the filter and most modern systems use one of a few common sizes. A good tip is to purchase two or three filters at a time so that when it is time to replace the filter, the new one is right there and ready to go. If you have furry pets in your home we recommend changing the filter on a monthly schedule.

2. Clearing the Outside HVAC Unit

Clearing the outside components of the HVAC unit maintains energy efficiency and keeps the system running smoothly. Before doing any maintenance, make sure to turn off the unit at the circuit breaker before starting any cleaning and inspection.

Remove any debris from the outdoor condenser unit. Don’t forget to trim any plants or vegetation close to the unit, keeping them at least two feet from the unit. On top of that, you should routinely visually inspect the fan blades to ensure nothing is stuck between them. This is critically important after a storm. If there is something lodged within the unit, be safe and call a professional.

When To Call a Professional HVAC Service Team

While you can easily handle some HVAC maintenance yourself, there are some that require specialized tools and a deeper knowledge of your system’s inner workings.

1. Installation of a New HVAC System

Installing a brand new HVAC unit requires the knowledge and skills of a professional. A qualified HVAC technician can identify the correct unit for your home based on several factors. A properly sized and installed unit will be more efficient, create a more comfortable home, and save money in the long run. Bigger is not always better.

2. Seasonal Maintenance

Keeping your HVAC systems maintained with an annual tune-up will reduce the odds of a breakdown when you need your system most. There are several components within your HVAC systems that require cleaning and adjustment every year. A professional HVAC technician will inspect the entire system and make the necessary adjustments to keep the unit performing at its best and maximizing its lifespan.

3. Repairs

As your HVAC systems age, heating or cooling your home may start to take longer for a number of reasons. Some necessary repairs are simple to correct, but difficult to diagnose. If you notice your house is not as comfortable as usual and you have already changed the filter and checked the programing on your thermostat, it may be time to call a professional for a visit. A small issue caught early can add years to the life of your system and potentially avoid a costly repair.

The Lesser Known Benefits of Working with an HVAC Professional

Here are some additional benefits of calling an HVAC professional for maintenance and repairs.

1. The Right Solutions, Right Now

A factory-trained HVAC technician will have the right tools, skills, knowledge, and experience to complete the repair or maintenance quickly. They will also have most of the commonly needed repair and maintenance parts with them, saving you from making several trips to the local hardware store. You’ll rest assured with the peace of mind knowing the job is done right.

2. Safety

Expert HVAC repair ensures the safety features of your system are functioning properly. Protecting your family and property are part of the job. Modern systems have several ways to ensure safe and efficient operation, but over time, they can require specific adjustments to sensors and fittings. Experienced HVAC technicians will know the details of your system and make sure everything is functioning properly and safely.

3. Advice and Experience

During a maintenance visit or repair, an experienced technician can also look at more than just the equipment. Years of experience working with other homes in your area can be valuable. Knowing how last winter’s storms could have put more strain on the heating system or how this year’s summer may be more than what your aging system can handle, provides you insights so you can plan for future HVAC maintenance or system upgrades and potentially avoid costly emergency repairs.

If you still aren’t sure which HVAC services to leave to an expert, contact us and we can help. Each of our Sila locations have been recognized with industry certifications and awards that acknowledge the unparalleled service and factory training we provide to customers and our dedication to being the best.

Additional Resources

  1. How To Select A Heating & Cooling Contractor
  2. 10 Tips for Hiring a Heating and Cooling Contractor
  3. 5 Benefits of a New, High-Efficiency HVAC System
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