When we first moved into our house, I hired a professional HVAC contractor to inspect and service the furnace and air conditioner.
- He assured me that the system was in good working order and should last quite a few more years.
Although he recommended that I enroll into a maintenance plan, I declined. I didn’t want to make the commitment to something that I felt wasn’t really necessary. As long as the heating and cooling system continued to start up and provide comfort, I did nothing beyond the occasional filter replacement. Last summer, my whole family suffered from frequent headaches. My kids complained of sore throats, congestion and itchy eyes. My husband was constantly coughing and sneezing. I wasn’t sure what was causing it. I never suspected the air conditioner. The only reason I called for air conditioner repair was because the unit eventually quit altogether. The HVAC contractor I hired took the cooling unit apart and showed me the buildup of grime inside. There was an alarming amount of mold growing on the evaporator coils. There was algae thriving in the condensate drain and a great deal of dust, lint and assorted contaminants coating every component. The contractor told me that every time the cooling system started up, those harmful toxins were becoming airborne and getting introduced into our breathing air. Plus, the buildup was restricting airflow through the system, causing it to work hard and resulting in higher energy bills. Fortunately, a thorough cleaning fixed all of these problems. I have now invested into a maintenance plan that includes regular service of the furnace in the fall and the air conditioner in the spring.