When Does Autumn Begin in the Big D?
In 2015, Dallas residents experienced one of the warmest Septembers ever recorded. Autumn officially began on September 23rd, but for autumn weather in Dallas, the start date is much later.
Much as people doubt weather pundits in any season, this year even the weathermen admit the rest of 2015 is hard to pin down. They’re saying things like a big El Nino is in the works – unless it fails to show. The drought may or may not continue. Sea surface anomalies across the Pacific will affect temperature and precipitation.
The first truly cold day probably won’t arrive in November. According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, November 2015 will see an average daily high of 59 degrees, which is two degrees above the typical month’s average. The almanac also predicts only 1.5 inches of rainfall in November, which is 1.5 inches below an average November.
Without a firm answer on 2015’s end of year weather, what is a homeowner to do?
Get prepared for shutting off your cooling system and turning on your heat when the time is right. Regardless of whether it will happen to you in November, implement these steps now and be prepared.
When it comes to your furnace, there is some preparation that can be done by a homeowner, and other prep that is best left to an HVAC professional. One of the easiest ways you can get the most mileage from your furnace is to monitor your filters, especially before turning it on for the first time.
Furnaces in Dallas sit unused for most of the year, until the end of November or beginning of December, when it finally dips to 40 degrees. Furnace filters will likely be dirtiest at the beginning of the season. Replace your filter and experience energy efficient heating, reduced risk of a fire hazard and cleaner indoor air.
Wipe down the surface of your furnace and tidy up the area directly around it. This cuts down on the chance of fire, and also makes your filters last longer.
In unpredictable weather, watch the thermostat like a hawk to prevent wasteful spending and overuse of your A/C and furnace.
A programmable thermostat is great when the weather is stable, but when it’s shifting rapidly you’ll need to remember to turn it up and down frequently.
Low-tech solution: A post-it note on the door to remind you. High-tech solution: Honeywell, Nest or a similar smart thermostat that is controllable from a smartphone. Forget to turn the heat down when you left home this morning? No problem. You can adjust it from the office.
Postponing A/C Maintenance is Costly
Many Dallas homeowners and businesses postpone maintenance or repairs of their central cooling systems until spring. Bad mistake.
Not only are you putting off the inevitable, but you are saving it for the start of the busy season. There could be delays and increased costs to wait until spring. Several issues could be affecting your A/C system, prolonging repairs and maintenance, even if idle throughout winter can cause further damage to system components.
What may have been a $400 repair, could easily turn into a full AC replacement.
Call in a Professional
The best way to prevent A/C and furnace repairs is to schedule regular professional tune-ups. Autumn is the perfect time in Dallas to have an HVAC professional methodically check equipment. Highlights of furnace maintenance include:
- Inspecting the vent system for leakages or blockage
- Checking wiring and the heat exchanger for rust and corrosion
- Confirming pilot lights/burners are properly igniting
- Assessing the drainage system
- Cleaning the blower wheel if necessary
- And much, much more!
Lex Air is happy to come and help with your autumn heating and cooling preparation. Join our roster of comfortable customers, satisfied with our service!