Protect Children in Your Home with These HVAC Safety Tips
Your HVAC system typically minds its own business…but when children are nearby, they may find it to be a new and exciting place to climb or play. That’s bad news! This type of activity can be extremely dangerous, due to the complex components of the HVAC system.
As a homeowner – and a parent – it’s important to keep children protected from the possible dangers of the HVAC system in your home. Fortunately, this can be done with some easy HVAC safety and maintenance steps.
Cover Exposed Radiators
Radiators get hot, posing a risk to curious children with wandering fingers. It only takes a split second for one of your children to touch a hot radiator and end up with a painful burn and possible scar. Keep your little ones away from an exposed radiator by placing a protective gate around the unit. This precaution will also discourage any climbing from children or any tiny hands getting caught in the radiator, causing an injury.
Always Use Vent Covers
The opening of any vent looks like the ultimate play or hiding spot to a child. Installing vent covers is an absolute necessity if there are children living in the home. This vent cover will help avoid any dangerous activity that can lead to injury.
How to install vent covers:
- Lift the back of the vent and cover the open duct. Then, take your drill and create holes in the ceiling for the placement of the screws. Properly line up the vent cover over the opening.
- Next, use your screwdriver to tightly secure each screw. After the vent cover is attached, make sure it is tightly attached and secure. An HVAC repair professional can help install vent covers if you feel it is a bit out of your comfort zone.
Gate the Area Around the Condenser
What is the condenser? It is the outdoor, boxy-looking unit of your air conditioner. This box can be a place that looks fun to climb or play to children, which could result in injury or worse, so keeping it blocked off properly is a must. In addition, kids may put toys or other small objects in your condenser, leading to an expensive repair.
Placing a condenser gate around the unit is an easy solution that can protect your children from injury and the condenser from damage. When installing the gate, always leave a minimum of two or three feet of space on each side. If there is the possibility of anything being placed on top of the condenser, make sure you leave a minimum of five feet from the top as well.
Regularly Check/Change Air Filters
Clean, particle-free air is a breeze by simply checking and changing your air filter. As part of regular HVAC maintenance and keeping the air in your home clean for you and your little ones, take a look at your air filter every 90 days and clean any dust or debris.
While you should replace filters as needed, keep in mind that if you live in an area with a dusty climate or you're near major construction projects, you may need to change them more frequently. Also, homes with pets may have filters that accumulate more dust and debris. Mark the check dates on your calendar as a reminder.
Place a Lock on the Thermostat
Little fingers love to explore all of the enticing buttons in the home, don’t they? Your thermostat is one of those things that you want to keep children away from. Ongoing button pressing and changing the temperature can damage the unit and cause it to malfunction over time. An influx of temperature adjustments can also have an impact on the cost of your utility bill.
You can avoid all of this by adding a simple lock to the thermostat. You can find these thermostat locks at any home improvement store, and they are very easy to install on your own. It is also a good idea to make sure your thermostat is installed at a height that children cannot reach.
Conduct Routine HVAC Maintenance
Your HVAC system requires the routine maintenance mentioned above and by a professional to keep it running efficiently and safely. As a homeowner, the HVAC maintenance also helps keep your home safe and avoid any major issues like gas leaks or other fire risks. An annual furnace tune-up will help pinpoint any problems as they arise or stop any big problems in their tracks, avoiding major repairs in the future.
By taking the proper precautions, you can help protect the children in your home from the dangers associated with an HVAC system. Keeping up with proper HVAC maintenance and repair and following these steps will make your home a safe space where safety will prevail.
About the Proskill Team
Established in 2008 by brothers Travis and Tyler, Proskill Plumbing was born from a family of tradesmen. The Proskill team is highly qualified, trained, and certified in countless home repairs, including furnace maintenance and repair. Each team member proudly exudes a strong work ethic and integrity alongside the professional skills to provide quality repairs on any home.