You may be wondering what we mean when we say that HVAC preventive maintenance plans prevent headaches. Is that metaphorical headaches in the form of HVAC problems, or literal pounding pain in your head? In this case, the answer is BOTH.
When you are a property manager, stress is a way of life. You have so many problems and complaints to deal with on a daily basis, that it’s no surprise when the metaphorical headaches lead to the real kind. So if you’re reading this blog because you want to solve HVAC problems OR because you want to stop taking ibuprophen every day, learning about HVAC preventive maintenance plans can help.
HVAC headaches you can prevent with HVAC preventive maintenance plans
With all the property owners or tenants that you take care of, you have probably experienced all of these HVAC-related problems at one time or another.
1. Breakdowns at the worst possible time
Do breakdowns ever happen at convenient times, like when the homeowners are out of town? Of course not. The air conditioner will go on the fritz on the day when the homeowner is planning a big party. Then you’ll have to deal with a panicking homeowner, drop everything else you’re doing and get a repairman in there ASAP.
The fact is, more often than not emergency breakdowns can be prevented with HVAC preventive maintenance plans. That’s because the plan includes regular inspections that can detect failing parts and declining performance that would otherwise not be noticed. Parts are replaced and problems are fixed proactively so the system doesn’t stop working with no warning.
Related article: 8 Ways HVAC Preventive Maintenance Plans Keep the Repairman Away
2. Complaints about hot and cold spots
Especially in New York City’s older buildings, it’s common to experience issues with temperature variance. Your tenants probably complain about some rooms being too hot while others are too cold. Or even worse, the temperature changing drastically from one day to the next. These particular headaches are not only troublesome, they can also be dangerous. That’s because people may take matters into their own hands and use space heaters, which can be a fire hazard and put many lives in jeopardy.
Did you know that one of the most common causes of temperature fluctuations is neglected HVAC maintenance? Having the system periodically inspected and tuned up, which is included in HVAC preventive maintenance plans, makes it run more efficiently and provide more consistent comfort.
3. Humidity and air quality problems
When an HVAC system is not working efficiently, humidity problems can result, and that’s something to avoid at all costs. Uncontrolled humidity in any space can cause air quality problems including the growth and spread of illness-causing bacteria, viruses, and mold. Not to mention pollen and dust that trigger allergy and asthma symptoms. Humidity that’s too high or too low can even cause damage to wood moldings, furniture, paintings and other expensive décor. The last thing you need is to be responsible for illness or ruined property of your residents.
Controlling humidity requires keeping heating and air conditioning systems well maintained. That’s one reason HVAC preventive maintenance plans are so important. Particularly in the spring and fall when air conditioners and heaters are turned on and off, your systems need to be cleaned and serviced to keep them working as designed and properly controlling humidity.
Related article: Bad Hair Days & More: Humidity and Air Conditioning Problems
4. Property damage from HVAC malfunction
There are many problems with air conditioning and heating systems that can lead to water leaks, which are a property manager’s worst nightmare. The next thing you know, not only do you have an HVAC repair problem to deal with, but you’ll be ripping out damaged walls, ceilings, and floors. And possibly having to relocate families while the work is done. Talk about a headache! This one could last for months.
HVAC preventive maintenance plans make the problems that cause water leaks far less likely to happen. That’s because the problems are discovered and fixed long before they have a chance to get severe enough to lead to water damage.
5. Waiting forever for an HVAC repair
Especially when you’re dealing with an irate homeowner or tenant, it’s incredibly frustrating when you have to wait days to get someone in to fix an air conditioning or heating system. Here’s something you might not know: HVAC preventive maintenance plans entitle you to get priority service when you need it most.
This is one of the benefits of HVAC preventive maintenance plans that property managers may not expect. As a loyal and regular customer, you’ll get moved to the front of the queue if you have a repair issue, so you’ll get faster service.
What HVAC preventive maintenance plans cover
HVAC preventive maintenance plans cover a number of regularly scheduled maintenance visits each year, when a technician will thoroughly inspect the equipment, clean and test the components for proper operation. The number of visits and the list of tasks covered will depend on the age and type of equipment, as well as the usage and operating conditions. You can also get contracts that include labor and parts for covered repairs.
HVAC preventive maintenance plans should be designed for your tenants or homeowners
Here’s one of the most important things you should know before you start shopping HVAC preventive maintenance plans: they’re not one-size-fits-all. The terms of the agreement should be customized based on the equipment, the level of coverage you’re comfortable with, and the needs of your clients or tenants.
Learn more about contract pricing, benefits, and types of service providers with our free guide to HVAC Preventive Maintenance Contracts: How to Find The Right One For Your HVAC Infrastructure.