How To Access Damage To Your HVAC Unit After A Storm
After a storm, accessing and assessing your HVAC unit is important to ensure that it has not sustained any damage and is safe to operate. Here are step-by-step guidelines to help you access your HVAC unit after a storm:
1. Wait for Safety Clearance:
- Before attempting to access your HVAC unit, ensure that it is safe to do so. Wait until the storm has completely passed, and local authorities have given the all-clear for residents to return and assess damage.
2. Inspect the Surrounding Area:
- Before approaching the HVAC unit, inspect the surrounding area for any hazards or signs of damage. Look for fallen branches, debris, or standing water that could pose a safety risk.
3. Turn Off Power if Necessary:
- If you turned off the power to your HVAC unit before the storm, keep it off until you’ve had a chance to inspect the system. Do not turn on the power if you suspect any damage or if the unit has been exposed to water.
4. Wear Protective Gear:
- Wear appropriate protective gear, including sturdy gloves and, if needed, safety glasses. Be cautious of sharp objects or debris that may be around the HVAC unit.
5. Clear Debris:
- Gently clear any debris, leaves, or branches from around the HVAC unit. Ensure that the condenser coils and fins are not blocked or obstructed.
6. Inspect for Physical Damage:
- Visually inspect the HVAC unit for any physical damage. Look for dents, bent fins, or other signs of impact. If you notice any damage, contact a professional HVAC technician for further assessment.
7. Check for Standing Water:
- If your HVAC unit is outdoors and has been exposed to flooding, check for standing water around the unit. If water has entered the unit, do not attempt to start it. Contact a professional for inspection and potential repairs.
8. Remove Cover if Used:
- If you covered your HVAC unit before the storm, carefully remove the cover to inspect the unit. Ensure that no debris or water has collected under the cover.
9. Inspect Indoor Components:
- Check the indoor components of your HVAC system, including air handlers and furnaces. Look for signs of water damage or leaks. If you notice any issues, contact a professional for inspection and repairs.
10. Schedule Professional Inspection:
- Even if you do not see visible damage, it’s advisable to schedule a professional HVAC inspection after a severe storm. A qualified technician can perform a thorough assessment of the system to identify any hidden issues.
11. Document Damage for Insurance:
- If you find significant damage to your HVAC unit, document it thoroughly with photographs. This documentation can be useful when filing an insurance claim for repairs or replacement.
12. Exercise Caution:
- If you are uncertain about the safety or condition of your HVAC unit, err on the side of caution. Contact a professional HVAC technician for guidance and assistance.
Remember that safety is paramount, and if you have any concerns or doubts about the condition of your HVAC unit after a storm, it’s best to seek professional assistance.