Mice and other rodents like to make themselves at home in air conditioner units which often leads to AC repair. Rodents feel safe and comfortable in large, warm spaces, so they will often choose to make homes near boilers or in HVAC vents.
These intruders can easily cause damage to your air conditioner and gain entry into your home in The Woodlands, TX, before you realize it. Keeping on top of regular AC repair and maintenance tasks will help keep your home and air conditioner pest-free. These are just a few of the ways you can prevent rodents and other pests from damaging your air conditioner and avoid premature issues caused by rodents:
Every month, perform a visual inspection!
Either yourself or an HVAC professional should conduct regular inspections, taking note of any signs of pests. Common indicators that a rodent has caused damage to your AC, resulting in the need for AC repair, include:
- Foul smells
- Chewed wiring
- Non-mechanical squeaking sounds
- Droppings, urine, and dander
- Reduced cooling efficiency
If rodents are found on your property in The Woodlands, TX, contact professional pest control to have them removed, then book an AC repair service to fix any lasting damage.
Keep the area surrounding your AC clean!
To avoid giving rodents unnecessary cover to make a nest around your AC’s outdoor components, regularly trimming the grass, weeds, and nearby branches can help. Both mice and rats are good climbers. They can scale vertical walls with ease, as well as shimmy up drainpipes. They can leap up to 36 inches vertically and 48 inches horizontally, so if you’ve got overgrown branches or trees within 4ft of your house walls, rodents can easily make the jump and climb up walls and find their way into vents, pipes, and your home.
All exterior components should be placed 2ft or more off the ground to avoid giving rodents an easy way into your AC system. Areas surrounding it should be kept free of vegetation that can provide a nearby hiding place for local pests. The more visible the area around your AC, the easier it is to see if rodents are making themselves at home nearby, and the quicker you can identify if AC repair is necessary.
Get a professional to seal possible points of entry in the AC!
Unwanted pests can enter your AC system through cracks, gaps, or holes. It’s not just rats and mice that are unwanted pests; you’ll find that ants, spiders, and other unwelcome guests can make themselves at home in your AC if points of entry aren’t adequately protected. HVAC professionals can seal or clean ducts and install mesh screens over exterior vents to prevent even the smallest of unpleasant visitors from setting up a permanent camp.
Turn off the condenser breaker during colder months!
Rodents, in particular, are known to seek warm areas to make their nest over winter. Turning off the condenser breaker while you won’t be using your AC in the colder months will help to prevent residual warmth from creating an attractive home for unwanted pests.
Pests can grow in number as the seasons change. This is because rodents and bugs will be hungry after a winter where they’ve been less active. For many pests, your home will appear as a luxurious hotel offering warmth and shelter during cold weather, making it imperative to seal all cracks and crevices they can get into.
It’s crucial that if you notice cracks anywhere in your AC, you book an AC repair service to seal up gaps or replace faulty components. If rodents have already made themselves safely at home during winter, you may find yourself dealing with far more unmanageable numbers when breeding begins during the warmer months. Not only can this result in costly pest control services, but it is likely to lead to AC repair.
Turning off the condenser during winter is just one way that TX homeowners can pest-proof their homes to make them less attractive to local pests. Unfortunately, pests can do severe damage to HVAC systems and affect your health, finances, and peace of mind. Some of the most common vermin that you may need to pest-proof against include:
- Ants and insects
- Mice and other rodents
- Raccoons and squirrels
Identifying Signs of Pests
Pests thrive best if they are unnoticed. They often have certain habits or natural behaviors that, if understood, can let homeowners and HVAC professionals in The Woodlands know which pests need to be taken care of and what action needs to be taken during AC repair. The first step towards resolving pest damage is to recognize the cause: that you have pest problems of a certain type. Seeing a rat running around outside your house or hearing their squeaks at night is not necessarily a correct indicator that they’ve caused any damage to your AC or found their way into your home. You might need to look for droppings, damage on walls, or other signs that indicate there are pests inside the home.
Without identifying and rectifying the true cause of HVAC damage, it’s impossible to prevent ongoing AC repair. Ideally, if you suspect pest damage and want to prevent future re-occurrences, you’ll need to do the following. Identify the problem, assess the damage, then eliminate the pests before repairing any damage to your HVAC system.
Have Your Vents Inspected and Maintained
One way to prevent future pest damage is to ask an HVAC professional to regularly inspect and maintain the vents attached to your property’s AC. Vents are a frequently used place for pests to hide in your home. Vents can be hidden and provide plenty of space for pests of any size, from small flies to large rodents. They also serve as a network of channels to help pests navigate your entire home. This means that no matter what scraps are in your home, whether it’s crumbs on the kitchen unit or wrapped up chocolates on the coffee table in another room, rats or roaches are capable of finding their way into that room and making their way out, all thanks to AC ductwork.
The vents and ducts are the first places to inspect if you see signs of pest damage, such as bites or scratch marks anywhere inside your home. Experts at Mr. Reliable Heating & Air can help you by inspecting your home’s HVAC ductwork and teaching you the warning signs. Without causing any damage to the system, our technicians can inspect all vents in your home. Not only will this help prevent unmanageable pest problems from occurring, but regular ductwork inspections can help to improve air quality and reduce the strain on your AC filter. Reduced strain on internal components can help prevent premature AC repair.
Keep Your Home Tidy
Pest magnets include dirty dishes, crumbs, and stains. Pests are scavengers, so taking away their opportunity to get even the smallest amount of food will help prevent them from trying to make themselves at home nearby. Pest-proofing your home can be done by effectively sealing all opened packets of food. Not only does this help you to keep food fresh, but it can prevent the contents of cookie or chip bags from being snatched by insects and rodents and avoids giving them an easy meal. To stop pests from getting too interested in your food, you can use tightly sealed bags or resealable containers.
It is easy to get rid of crumbs and dirty dishes by following a strict cleaning schedule. Leaving dishes out for too long or not cleaning crumbs that have found their way under the sofa can potentially provide easy pickings for pests.
Thankfully, pests will be more at ease in a natural setting like your yard, so they are more likely to take shelter close to the outside or in the yard itself. However, this doesn’t mean that an untidy home isn’t attractive to visiting pests.
Seal All Points Of Entry
Consider more than sealing openings around vents or adding mesh to vent openings. Pests can easily enter your house through cracks around windows, flues, chimneys, gutters, and other seams in your home. Gaps in caulking should be replaced, and loose bolts or other miscellaneous repairs also need attendance.
Check Humidity Levels
Aside from rodents who prefer warmth, many pests thrive in damp and dark conditions. Make sure to drain any excess water from your home, removing puddles around air conditioners through an AC repair service that addresses the main cause. Also, make sure that bathrooms are ventilated well, as this will keep the humidity lower and less inviting to pests.
HVAC Inspections That Will Prevent Frequent AC Repair
Most HVAC companies perform three types of HVAC inspections. However, they may use different names.
- HVAC Tune-Ups. Your HVAC inspection can be called an HVAC tune-up. A tune-up or inspection is typically a multi-point inspection that includes assessing your air conditioner to see if you need AC repair. Tune-ups are recommended for heaters in the fall and ideally completed for air conditioners in the spring. This means now is a prime time to book a tune-up if you haven’t already! A thorough inspection combined with regular maintenance can often prevent breakdowns.
- HVAC Repair. An AC repair service will also involve an inspection before any repairs or replacements are made. This type of inspection is focused on the reported problem, e.g., lack of airflow or broken component, and is not as thorough as a tune-up appointment.
- HVAC Inspection. A dedicated HVAC inspection is a complete service that may come with or without maintenance tasks. Regular HVAC inspections are useful, as they include a written audit of the equipment’s age, installation, performance, and any recommendations for improvements or AC repairs. These inspections are great for homeowners looking to sell or buy property in The Woodlands. Additionally, inspections are an ideal way to get a second opinion on any recommended AC repair. This inspection is usually more thorough than a standard home inspection. A thorough inspection is essential for homeowners to evaluate an HVAC system’s longevity and health.
AC Inspection Procedures
The thermostat is the central temperature control unit in the HVAC system. A professional HVAC contractor tasked with AC repair will often start an inspection by investigating this component to ensure that the switch-on/off functions function properly. The expert then checks the thermostat’s temperature settings, analyzes its performance, and cleans the unit to ensure its smooth operation.
The HVAC inspector will turn off the cooling and heating systems during the inspection to ensure safety. Otherwise, power can be accidentally switched on and cause injury to anyone working around the furnace and air conditioner.
Next, AC technicians clean the unit. AC cleaning involves vacuuming and brushing any dust, leaves, or cobwebs out of vents and away from the unit. Once this is done, they can now open the system without worrying about delicate parts becoming spoiled by dust and debris.
Your HVAC unit’s fans are an essential component. For the HVAC unit to function properly, it must be straightened and cleaned. Professionals can clean the fans with a strong cleaning agent if they are very dirty. If they notice any irregularities in the shape, the technician will use a fan-straightening tool to bend them back into the right place during an AC repair service.
The inspection should also include a check for the levelness and stability. For example, the compressor can fail prematurely if it isn’t on level ground. Our technicians will ensure your HVAC system is leveled appropriately at the right height from ground level to prevent pests from getting easy access and ensuring optimal stability.
Additionally, our experienced team works on other aspects of your home’s HVAC system, including the evaporator coil. Technicians may also monitor runoff water flow and replace air filters. If you’re concerned about the presence of pests or need to book an AC repair service to repair damages caused by unwanted visitors to your home in The Woodlands, TX, call out Mr. Reliable Heating & Air technicians to inspect your HVAC.
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