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HVAC & Pest Control – 3 Ways They Intersect

You may not think of pest control when you think of your heating and cooling systems or vice versa, but they have more in common than you think. Pest management and HVAC can even help each other work better when both are done correctly. Here are 3 ways that’s true.

1. Insulation

pest control technician inspecting attic

When your house is insufficiently insulated, it makes your heating and cooling system work overtime. That strain can not only inflate your energy bills, but it can shorten the life of the system. If you don’t have enough insulation, you can always add more. But if your insulation is just old, replacing it can be a good option. Old insulation can break down over time, and here’s where pests come in! They just love making a home in that warm insulation. Mice, cockroaches, and squirrels are just three of the common pests that you can find in an attic. Once pests are there, they can create a nest, urinating and defecating all around the attic. Not only can that make your insulation ineffective, but the pee and poop can dry and enter the air as particles that can make you and your family sick and even exacerbate asthma.

2. Proactive

Just like being proactive about your pest control can save your home from getting pests in the first place. At the very least, it can catch them early enough before they become a larger problem. The same holds true with your heating and cooling systems. Waiting for the first frost to test the heat or for the first 90-degree day to check out your air conditioning can leave you in an uncomfortable position until repairs can be made. Often, emergency repairs are more expensive, too. We spoke to John Uhrynowich, the licensed master HVACR contractor of record and president of Harmony Heating Corporation about when you should be checking these systems out. He said, “When the temperature climbs into the mid-70s inside your home try your cooling system out for a few hours. Make sure you close the windows and set the thermostat to four degrees below the room temperature. There are some obvious signs that your unit isn’t working properly. Check the air coming out of the vents. Is it cold? Check outside and make sure the condenser is running, the air should be warmer than the air outside. Check to make sure your indoor unit is running. In milder weather, the temperature should drop within a few hours. If not, schedule a service call and avoid possible delays on the first hot day. For your heating system, before the first frost set the thermostat a few degrees above the room temperature. Check to see that the unit starts up and the fan runs. You can usually tell if the heat is working within a few minutes. It’s normal to get a slightly funny smell the first time the heat runs, but if this continues, you should schedule a service call. Now would be a good time to change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, too!”

3. Moisture

technician servicing heat pump outside of home

Excess moisture in your home can bring with it a host of problems. Pests love moisture since water is the one thing they just can’t live without. It’s also the one thing they can live on a small amount of! So, the condensation that can build up in your home is plenty to attract cockroaches, rats, mice, and many other pests to your home. That moisture, if left unchecked, can also lead to peeling paint, mold, and mildew. Dehumidifiers can help keep the moisture down. A proper heating and cooling system can also keep your home at a stable temperature, which will help keep the humidity at bay. A moisture control system can also help keep moisture out of your crawlspaces and basements, which is where pests can live quite happily since you may not frequent those spaces as often.

A proper HVAC system along with proper pest control can really make your home a happy place. In addition to the ways they can help each other outlined above, the technicians are often in similar spaces in your home. If you have a great HVAC company that will work with your trusted pest control provider, they can work together to be a second set of eyes for each other. More eyes are always better when it comes to keeping your home clean, comfortable, and pest free!

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