Pets are undeniably important members of our family. However, because our homes are built for humans, we need to make sure that they don’t damage some of our less robust fixtures. We also need to make sure that every one of our family members is safe and comfortable. Sometimes, this means making a few adjustments to accommodate everyone.
A Few Extra Considerations
Family pets often have plenty of fur and dander, so you may have to add steps to your HVAC maintenance to prevent problems.
And because family members are frequently allergic to that fur and dander, you may have to increase that maintenance.
Your pet usually stays at home indoors all day while the rest of the family is out. That means you may have to adjust how your HVAC system operates during those hours.
HVAC Care Tips for Pet Parents
The following tips will help you protect your HVAC equipment, your pet, and any sensitive family members.
1. Change the air filters monthly
While most HVAC experts recommend changing the air filter every season, you should change it monthly if you have pets. This will prevent any hair from infiltrating the system and causing damage. It will also help remove dander from the air and prevent it from spreading to every room.
2. Regular grooming
Brushing and grooming your pet frequently will help remove excess hair from the equation. Bonus points if you can perform this task outdoors, which also removes it from the indoor environment.
3. Clean floors frequently
Sweeping excess hair and dirt brought in on your pet’s feet helps protect your HVAC system from being overloaded. Pet hair and dust can accumulate and block intake grills, as well as clog the air filter.
4. Have an air purifier installed
If you or a family member are sensitive to air particulates, you may want to introduce a UV-C air purifier into your system. These devices can kill bacteria, pollen, and other contaminants that may ride in on your pet’s fur.
4. Protect your condensing unit
Male pets often feel the need to mark their territory, and a condensing unit is as good as a tree, according to your schnauzer. Pet urine can corrode the unit and potentially damage it permanently.
Any curious chewing behavior could injure your pet, even fatally. If your pet has access to the condensing unit, consider enclosing it securely.
5. Rethink your thermostat settings
If your pet is home alone all day, you’ll need to ensure that they’re comfortable at the thermostat settings.
Healthy adult cats can tolerate a temperature range between 45- and 90-degrees Fahrenheit. Kittens and senior cats may be more comfortable at temps between 60 and 80. You can safely set your AC to 78 to save on energy costs, as long as you make sure that they have plenty of fresh drinking water.
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AMVA) recommends a temperature range of above 60 to below 80 degrees Fahrenheit for both cats and dogs. However, since the physiology of dog breeds ranges to extreme variances, also consider the breed.
Consult your vet for specific information that considers your pet’s breed, fur thickness, age, or other factors.
6. Increased maintenance
Regular maintenance will surely lengthen the lifespan of your HVAC system. However, when you have pets, you simply can’t drop the ball on this one.
Having a pet will likely increase the demand on your HVAC system, so keeping it in tip-top shape will prevent future failures as well as make it more energy efficient.
Unlike you, if the AC fails, your pets can’t just go to work or school when it gets too hot during the day. They’re stuck in the house with no AC and Miami heat and humidity.
Weird noises from your AC system need to be investigated immediately. While you may not be bothered by banging ductwork, it causes a great deal of anxiety in your family pet. According to animal behavioral scientists, unexpected household noises such as vacuums and smoke detector battery alarms can cause dogs a great deal of distress.
Your ductwork can also harbor plenty of pet hair, which attracts bacteria and mites. If you have family members with sensitivities or respiratory problems, this can exacerbate them. An annual professional ductwork cleaning is a must if you have pets.
There are a number of things you can do as a homeowner to maintain your HVAC system, such as changing the filter monthly. However, a professional technician has the right tools to perform the job and identify future problems before they happen.
Make an appointment today with the experts at One Hour Air in Miami. We can offer a maintenance plan that ensures your HVAC system survives all the furry friends in your home.