Check Your Heating Unit (HVAC) before the Cold Reaches Texas
Unlike the gradual seasonal transitions experienced in other parts of the country, Texas tends to move from hot to cold in the span of less than one week. The only thing predictable about Texas weather is its unpredictability. So, as every good Boy or Girl Scout knows, it’s best to be prepared. Goodness knows Texans don’t tolerate cold well. If you get caught in the first cold snap without a heater, there won’t be enough collegiate hoodies in Austin to keep you from wishing you had checked your heater earlier.
If you’re a boat owner, you have learned (or will learn) the value of checking the boat’s motor before launching it from the trailer on the lake. It’s not easy to get the boat back on the trailer when the motor won’t crank.
If you’re a cyclist, you check the tires of your bike before riding off into the sunset to ensure you and your bike aren’t stranded under the Congress Avenue Bridge with the bats after dark.
If you’re the parent of a newborn, you don’t leave the house with the baby without packing a diaper or two before walking out the door, so when the inevitable happens a clean exchange can occur.
If you’re a homeowner, you prepare for cold weather before the first cold front. In states farther north that involves winterizing sprinkler systems and automobiles, stacking firewood closer to the back door and gassing up the snow blower. Here in the great state of Texas, there are really only two major preparations: dig out the winter clothes and make sure your heater works.
“But it’s only September,” you say. That’s true, but consider the following scenario before you decide to put off your winter preparedness. On October 5 an Arctic cold front makes its way south to the hill country. October 4 was a pleasant 87 degrees. Overnight the temperatures plummeted and you awaken to an outdoor temperature reading of 45. You grab a blanket to wrap around your shivering self and make your way to the climate control panel to turn on the heater.
After flipping the switch, you walk away mentally preparing yourself for the smell of hot lint that always seems to accompany the first heater use of the year, reminding you to change the air filter. Moments later you realize that not only do you not smell it, but you’re not getting warmer either. You pause to listen and hear air being forced through the vents. Reaching your hand in front of the vent confirms your fear: that is not heat.
Annoyed, you reach for your phone to call your favorite HVAC contractor to come do a quick heater repair. So does every other procrastinating Texan who denied winter’s approach and didn’t check their heater before their home began to feel like a southwestern igloo. As the demand increases, so does the amount of time you will have to wait for service. The line that didn’t exist in the latter parts of September now, figuratively speaking, wraps around the building. If only you had thought ahead…