It is usually not a good idea to turn off your HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) while going on a vacation because extreme temperatures may affect some of your household items and installations. At the same time, you don't want to continue running the HVAC at full capacity when you are away; it wastes energy. Here are some HVAC tips to take care of your house and its energy efficiency while away on vacation:
Ensure All Windows Are Covered
If you will be away for a while, there will be no one to close the doors, close the storm shutters and pull down the blinds so ensure you take care of such things before you leave. Such openings will make your HVAC work harder than normal by letting in air from the outside or letting conditioned air escape. That might not be a huge problem for a day or two, but the effect is larger for extended periods.
Raise the Thermostat
Most people set their thermostats around 68 degrees F to 70 degrees F because this is where they feel comfortable. That is all good if you are in the house because it guarantees your comfort, but your household items, furnishings, and appliances don't need to feel the same comfort as you. Therefore, raise the temperature slightly if you are going on a vacation – something like 78 degrees F. That way the HVAC doesn't have to work too hard to cool or heat your home, and your household fixtures and items don't freeze or get damaged by heat.
Disconnect Electronics and Electrical Appliances
Electronic and electrical appliances emit heat even if they don't feel hot to the touch. Also, don't forget that many electrical items draw some power (and some of which ends up as heat) even when they are turned off as long as they are plugged in. Therefore, before setting off for your vacation, ensure all the appliances and electronics are turned off and unplugged so that they don't heat the house unnecessarily and give the AC extra work
Change the Filters Before Leaving
It is advisable to contract HVAC maintenance services before leaving; the longer your vacation is likely to be the more it's advisable to service the unit. This will reduce the chances of something going wrong while you are away and can't fix it. At the very least, you should clean or change the filters to ensure efficient airflow and HVAC operations even while you are away.